Windows Live surely taking its time with updates

I’m rather a bit upset that it’s been a real long while since Windows Live has offered some true updates or kept up with itself. Sure, Windows Live Wave 4 is just around the corner, but why should it take that long just for some updates? Or even stay active in the community somehow?

So far, the only new things is:

  • a few Hotmail updates – more keyboard shortcuts, improved buddy list, improved contact picker, auto-save drafts, ability to download all files in one zip compared to one-by-one. Nothing really revolutionary here.
  • brought back ability to attach photos (now a separate choice)
  • another version of Windows Live Movie Maker
  • Greater access to Office Web Apps
  • Silverlight Streaming is dead
  • Live Events is dying

Not much more than that. At least Windows Live Wire is still blogging occasionally, and they’ve finally let commenting come back.

However, there’s been things that should be simple to update, and I don’t see any point in waiting for Wave 4 to come. Such as:

  1. More “theme” choices – Does it really take months to work on some nice simple themes? It’s not the most important priority, but given the limited choice of themes you can use (18 as of today), there shouldn’t be any delay in getting some more themes out until Wave 4 comes. At least the ability to customize our own themes, like the way you can use photos in Messenger, would be a nice way to customize.
  2. UI update to Gallery, OneCare, My.Live.com – We’re on Wave 3 and OneCare and Windows Live Gallery sites are still stuck on Wave 2, My.live.com is surprisingly still on Wave 1, and I don’t see why the teams are so lazy to update. If these teams can’t update those sites by now, then it makes me less confident that I should bother using Windows Live. The Wave 2 header is so outdated. For instance, Contacts is still used in the place of People (though I do prefer ‘Contacts’), and Live Search is still in place of Bing.
  3. Calendar Sync for Windows Live Mobile – If it’s not by Wave 4, Microsoft will really have some disappointed customers. Well more disappointed actually.
  4. Cutting the spam in Live Spaces – Ok, I thought Microsoft had finally resolved the problem, but like I mentioned in a previous post, it’s still going on. Thankfully, X-Evolutionist has taken action by personally finding the URL’s of every spammer’s Profile to submit to Microsoft. Perhaps something will get done. Thanks X-Evolutionist.
  5. Better account integration with other Microsoft entities – For instance, if I’m already signed into Windows Live, why am I not automatically signed in when I go to Bing or MSN or even Xbox sites? Why do I need to create a different username for different Microsoft entities, when it’s all using Windows Live ID? Sounds rather ridiculous and superfluous. This should be resolved.

Stuff like this shouldn’t require a whole ‘wave’ of updates. Nobody appreciates waiting months and months for good updates to come. Instead, a ‘wave’ should just be more of a UI update, with perhaps a few major new features/services, but for tiny or even medium-priority features, they should come out more often. No need to wait.

Anyway, I just wanted to express that I’m a bit tired of the waiting process for Microsoft’s online stuff. I know a few people that are already giving up Windows Live, because they were a bit annoyed with the usual ‘waiting game’. Anyone else feel the same about having to wait for ‘full waves’ to get more good stuff out of Windows Live?

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7 thoughts on “Windows Live surely taking its time with updates

  1. yes….totally agree, seems microsoft only really care about their \’outrageously priced\’ software…bill gates is an evil greedy reptile!

  2. There has been a serious lack of signs of Microsoft\’s commitment to Windows Live in the long run. I often realize that Windows Live is mentioned as an after-thought if at all by Microsoft even when they update some of their assets to incorporate more social networking functionality. To name a few instances- Bing pong – Excludes Windows Live sharing- Bing realtime search – Windows Live is certainly a candidate as Jamie Thomson has protested in his blog http://jamiethomson.spaces.live.com/blog/cns!550F681DAD532637!11768.entry- The upcoming integration of Twitter, Facebook etc into XBox360. What about Live?I really hope that Windows Live Wave 4 will be worth the wait when it sees the light of day. I hope it is much more than just Windows Live Devices (Live Mesh) and Windows Live Documents but judging from the latest trends out of MS, I would bet on a disappointment. It is also very unsettling to see that all Steve Ballmer talks about is Bing (His obsessive anti-Google). My debateable opinion is that Bing has reached the approximate effeciency of Google and the next step should be innovating and creating other compelling Microsoft products that in a lot of ways link back and drive traffic back to Bing. That is if Bing has now become the be all of Microsoft.

  3. I agree with some of the comments made here. However, Windows Live is surely going to have to take a more prominent step forward now that its Essential Suite of programs is such an integral part of Windows 7? And as once you begin using the Essentials Suite, then the Windows Live site itself becomes far more prominent as well. It\’s amazing just how many computer users are not even aware that such a site exists, or if they are, they don\’t realise just how much it contains (or that you can blog on here) I just hope that they aren\’t considering moving it into the more \’corporate users\’ domain with the Windows Live Documents and Windows Live Devices as you say Lebohang. Most users on Windows Live will not be particularly interested in this side of things, they just want to write their blog, make friends, share photos etc.

  4. I just want threaded emails for Hotmail, which Gmail has. It\’s a killer feature, and inboxes are are a mess without it. As for the themes, I don\’t see why they can\’t just outsource the whole thing to users like Google has done, especially since they aren\’t going to be making any more by the looks of it.

  5. Windows Live Spaces desperately needs better analytics as well. Apparently creating your own Google Analytics won\’t work, because widgets are iframed.

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