So.cl:Microsoft’s Social Networking Experiment
Microsoft, the software giant better known for enterprise productivity software and Excel spreadsheets, is forging into territory more commonly reserved for bootstrapping Silicon Valley startups: social media.
Microsoft’s two-month old So.cl, a hybrid social network and search engine, marks the company’s latest attempt to get cozy with consumers and move beyond the boardroom, an effort that has ensnared Microsoft in multiple battles with tech behemoths such as Apple and Google.
Microsoft is careful to cast So.cl as a research experiment, not a full-on assault against the likes of Facebook and Twitter.
Instead, the service offers a playground for the company to test new features and concepts that could ultimately help shape its search engine, Bing, which has made ongoing efforts to differentiate itself from Google. Already, Bing has attempted to one-up Google by cutting deals with Facebook and Twitter to integrate some social elements into its search results, and So.cl could very well offer a glimpse at new avenues Bing may choose to pursue.
Launched by Microsoft’s FUSE Labs, a research group of about 30 people, So.cl grew out of an attempt to imagine what search would look like if it had been preceded by social media, not the other way around, notes FUSE Labs’ general manager Lili Cheng.
“Search is something you typically do alone. You might find content in search you want to share with other people, but it’s hard to share the stuff you’re looking at within search,” said Cheng. “We said let’s open up the box and experiment to see how we could merge together these concepts of search and social networking.”
“We started to think about … what search might be like if everything you did on search was together with other people,” Cheng added.
- The So.cl Feed
- Sharing On So.cl
- The Landing Page For So.cl’s Video Parties
- Inside A So.cl Video Party
- Another View: The So.cl Feed
Source :- http://www.huffingtonpost.com
- Microsoft Mixes Social Networking with Search (c24.co.uk)