In keeping with its strategy to slowly reveal different components of Windows Live wave 4 over time, Microsoft today unveiled the next version of Windows Live Messenger. The product was officially unveiled during a talk Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer gave in Sao Paulo, Brazil called "Five Dimensions of the Cloud." But you can find out more on the newly-available Windows Live Preview web site. Don't be fooled by the prominent "Download" button, however: It's not available for public consumption quite yet.

The New Messenger

Windows Live Messenger is the most meaningful way to stay in touch with the people that matter most and has great new ways to connect and share.

Consumers Prioritize Their Friends Differently

Like most online consumers, you probably accept social networking invitations all the time from friends, family, co-workers and distant acquaintances, steadily expanding your circle of online interaction — and often, you’ll likely accept an invite simply because you feel bad saying no. However, even though you’re “connected” to a vast network of people online, you typically end up communicating regularly with a smaller group of “real friends” — those are the close friends whose profiles you’ll visit, who you’ll send private messages to, who you’ll allow to interrupt you in real time and connect over instant messaging (IM). Moreover, conversations and sharing with those close friends compose a significant amount of the time you spend online.

Sharing Is Exploding — in More Ways, on More websites, From More Devices

As internet usage continues to explode, consumers everywhere are spending more time across a variety of different websites, communicating and interacting with friends, family, acquaintances and co-workers. In the process, you are likely racking up different credentials on multiple networks and subsequently have to share the same photo or video in multiple places to make sure it reaches those people you care about. This leads to tons of duplication and social overload in trying to stay in touch with your friends. Some online services are trying to solve this by making you do everything on their website and with their network. But we believe that you shouldn’t have to stop using the services you enjoy — someone just needs to make this easier and help you navigate through all that social clutter. What you need are tools that help you prioritize your closest friends and find the social updates, photos, messages and other data from those important people.

Consumers Want Control Over Their Privacy

As you start communicating and sharing more online, you end up placing personal information, data and content all over the internet. This has resulted in a growing concern about online privacy, with more than 75 percent of consumers today admitting they are worried about their online privacy and more than 50 percent of users saying they are confused about the extent of what’s public, what’s private, what content is viewable and by whom.

At Microsoft, our goal is to ensure that you are in control of the privacy. You shouldn’t have to feel like you don’t have control over your privacy and that your data could potentially be made public without your permission.

The New Messenger — Transformed to Help You Stay in Touch With the People That Matter

The new Windows Live Messenger is designed to address all these challenges, make your conversations more meaningful, and give you the tools to bring together all your social updates and help you connect with the people that matter. We have reinvented Messenger to do four important things:

  • Deliver the best IM — making common tasks easier and personal interactions more meaningful
  • Seamlessly integrate into the things you’re already doing on the web and on your phone
  • Give you the ultimate social dashboard for staying in touch while eliminating the noise
  • Provide tools that are designed to put you in control and keep your private life private

More info soon!