Microsoft is readying multiple new search releases -- the first of which is coming this fall -- that it will launch over the next 12 months.
The fall search update will include improvements to the search core, relevance and performance and mobile capabilities as well as new vertical search experiences, Kevin Johnson, the President of Microsoft's Platforms and Services division, told attendees of Microsoft's Financial Analyst Meeting (FAM) conference.
Search isn't the only Live rollout coming. Johnson said Microsoft is preparing a full Windows Live 2.0 update for launch this fall. The 2.0 update will be a single suite of user services available as a single download that will work on the PC, phone and browser, Johnson said.
"This is the must-have upgrade to the Windows experience," Johnson said.
(Microsoft has begun positioning its new generation of Windows Live services, such as the recently announced Windows Live Folders and Windows Live Photo Gallery, as adjuncts to existing Windows software components. And it has committed to providing customers with a single installer, single download, common contact list and common Live ID facility across its core family of Windows Live services.)
In a related move, Microsoft announced on July 26 that it has created yet another Microsoft-research-advertising incubation unit, the Internet Services Research Center.)
Johnson reiterated Microsoft's plans to become more and more of an advertising company. He announced that Microsoft has acquired AdECN, a company that provides an auction exchange for display ads.
"We now have all the core components for our ad network," Johnson told FAM attendees. He said that Microsoft believes the online advertising market is consolidating and that Microsoft "intend(s) to be one of the top two" remaining.