On that Windows Live Preview site, Microsoft has also posted a nice list of new features in the next version of Windows Live Messenger:
The new Messenger is packed with new features that make it easier to stay in touch with the people that matter most and offers great new ways to connect and share. Learn more about these features and benefits in this section.
Makes Online Tasks Easier and Personal Interactions More Meaningful
We know it’s difficult to have a meaningful online conversation with a close friend when you’re juggling multiple chat applications at the same time. While building the new Windows Live Messenger, we wanted to ensure you had uninterrupted access to your “favorite” friends while also making it easy to manage multiple conversations at the same time. We also know that you want to bring interesting content in your conversation. The new Windows Live Messenger lets you do just that, enabling richer photo and video sharing — and making it easy to drag a photo from your PC into the conversation while chatting. What’s more, this feature encompasses more than just the content on your PC — with one click, you can pull in your photos from online sites such as Windows Live SkyDrive and Facebook.
More games in Messenger let you play with your friends, earn achievements and brag about your wins.
Show your affiliation with an organization or social cause and have this show up next to your name when it fans out to your friends.
When your friends are offline, leave them a video message, similar to a voicemail but as a quick video that will be waiting for them when they sign in.
Integration of Bing results
Integration of Bing search results makes it easier to add photos and videos from across the web without having to leave the conversation window.
High-definition video chat
Meaningful conversations are enhanced by allowing you to see and hear your friends. The new Messenger now provides high-definition video chat, helping you experience video chats so you can share photos while chatting and see your friends’ reactions in real time and in full screen.
You can manage all your chats in one location so you can juggle multiple conversations in one place rather than having multiple windows popping up.
Seamlessly Integrated Into the Things You’re Already Doing on the web and on Your Phone
Although the Windows Live Messenger app is the best way to stay in touch on your PC, we know you also spend a lot of time in your Hotmail inbox, on other websites across the internet, and using your mobile phone. So it’s important that Messenger works seamlessly with your preferred device or application and in your chosen location. The new Windows Live Messenger is packed with features that enable you to stay connected, whether you’re on the web, the computer or your mobile phone.
Get Messenger on the web
When you're away from your PC or can't install Messenger at work, you can still stay connected at messenger.live.com.
If you’re one of over 200 million people who use both Hotmail and Messenger, you can now see who’s online and easily start a chat right from your inbox.
This add-in for Windows internet Explorer detects when you’re on a website that one of your friends has shared content from and surfaces that update so you can instantly view what they’ve shared and comment right back.
Messenger for the Windows Phone, iPhone and Blackberry
Get the best mobile experience on these smartphones including access to all your contacts, seeing your social updates, starting a chat conversation, sharing photos and updating your status. Messenger often comes pre-installed on smartphones, but if it’s not on yours, just head over to the phone’s application marketplace.
Short message service (SMS)
Connect your mobile phone number to Messenger so your friends’ instant messages on a PC are converted to SMS messages on your phone (and vice versa).
Easily keep up with Messenger social updates and share what you’re doing.
Tools Designed to Keep You in Control of Your Data and Keep Your Private Life Private
Windows Live puts you in control of your content and information. And you choose whether to share with just your close friends and family or if you want to open things up to everyone on the internet — it’s your choice. And by default, we’ll make sure things stay more private and don’t get accidentally shared to the public. We do this by providing the following:
Simple privacy settings
Easily get started by choosing from one of three default privacy profiles that are the most common ways consumers like to share their data. The default is never expose your personal data to the public.
Of course, if you want to get more granular, we’ve got easy-to-use controls that let you set detailed sharing preferences by each specific piece of data.
Manage your contacts
You can create categories such as “Friends” or “Co-workers” to easily organize your address book and serve as groups to share things with or even as just a distribution list to communicate with and set permissions around.
Availability by category
Once you have those categories, it’s easy to choose your presence availability by category so you can be offline to one set of friends while you’re online to another — letting you decide who can reach you in real time.
You can see exactly what you’re sharing with a specific person and what personal information, photos, docs and other content they have access to.
Ultimate Social Dashboard for Staying in Touch While Eliminating the Noise
Because most people today use a variety of social networks and content sharing sites, with different sets of friends and acquaintances dispersed throughout these disparate networks, it can be challenging — and exhausting — to visit different websites and create different accounts just to keep abreast of your friends’ updates. But it isn’t just about bringing all that data together. What’s really valuable is helping you filter through the clutter and get to those updates you really care about — the ones from those people who you communicate with most frequently. There are a lot of intelligent algorithms and machine learning that can help in this, but we’ve found one of the best ways is to simply ask people. So, Windows Live Messenger will come right to the source — YOU — and ask you to specify your favorites:
Share web activities
Your friends can share updates of their web activity from sites they’re part of so you don’t have to create accounts and networks in all those places.
Connect your other networks
Messenger lets you bring together your friends, communications and updates from top social networking and sharing websites right into Messenger.
Receive social updates from Hotmail
We’ll also pull all the social updates sitting in your Hotmail inbox right into Messenger so you don’t have to go to two places.
Single contact list
By bringing all these networks and updates together, we’ll also do the work to de-duplicate those contacts and give you one master list of friends with all the different ways to communicate and share content with them (across all those different networks).
Friends that you’ve specified as being most important. We prioritize them in your friends list so they show up at the top, and we prioritize them in your social updates so that photos, updates and other data from them also rise to the top.
This new view of your social updates is designed around those “favorite” people and making their social updates gain prominence, helping to reduce the noise and clutter from those people that are less important.
Whether it’s Messenger updates or things you’ve pulled in from one of your networks, you’ll be able to comment right inline and have that post back to wherever the update came from.
Richer status updates
Messenger has always made it easy to share text updates. Now, when you type in a URL, Messenger will grab a snippet of that web page and make it easy to share it, or when you drag in a photo or video, you can add a caption and share that with your friends.
Synchronized status updates
When you post an update, you can have Messenger automatically synchronize that update with your other networks and vice versa.