Microsoft launches classified listings site

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Wednesday, July 12, 2006

Screenshot of Expo, US version.

Microsoft launched its free online classified listing site, Windows Live Expo today in the United States market, announcing that it is no longer a public pre-release beta version, but "a fully fledged Windows Live service". The corporation is readying a UK version, too.

Expo, one of the 30+ announced Windows Live services and software products, is the fifth service in the set to launch. It was previously available in a public beta form for U.S. residents.

On Windows Live Expo users can buy and sell items, post classified advertisements, and search for bargains. Similar Web sites include Craigslist and eBay. Expo can perform searches for listings by people in a specific group (e.g. only e-mail contacts), and also by the geographic distance of the advertiser from the user.

The service is meant to be heavily integrated with other Windows Live products, such as Messenger and Spaces. The new version, compared to the betas, introduces the new Windows Live look, the ability to add comments to a listing, provides driving directions to a specific place (like the home of the seller of an item), and also provides more help for developers to expand upon Expo.

The announcement, published on the product team's blog, also noted that a UK version of the service was created and is available internally inside the company.

Expo was previously code-named Classified, and earlier code-named Fremont.

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