Spanning the Globe: MSN Adds 24 Countries
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The announcement was made today at a Forrester Research Inc. forum by Pete Higgins, group vice president of Microsoft's Interactive Media Group.
The portals include: Argentina; Austria; Belgium; Brazil; Chile; China-- China/Hong Kong; China/Taiwan; Colombia; Denmark; Finland; Italy; Malaysia; Mexico; Netherlands; New Zealand; Norway; Peru; Singapore; South Africa; South Korea; Spain; Sweden; and Switzerland.
The company said there will be local versions of several MSN services, such as MSN Hotmail, MSN Web Search, MSN Web Communities and MSN Messenger Service, which are scheduled for availability in the first half of 1999.
Microsoft has been trying to play catch up to the other prominent portals, such as Yahoo!, and Lycos, who already offer international sites. Earlier this week Microsoft announced that MSN added 120 community areas to its MSN Web Communities.
"The Web lifestyle is being realized all over the world, and Microsoft is making a global investment to help users organize the Web around people, interests and services that are important to them," Higgins said. "Our goal for MSN is to help people get things done online wherever they are, in the U.S. or abroad. Microsoft will invest in making MSN the most useful network of online services locally and globally."