NBCi Changing Its Feathers

NBCi is getting a new look as the online portal takes steps to integrate its family of sites into one. But members of NBCi-owned properties will likely experience intermittent problems until the transition is complete.

The move will affect users of Snap.com and Xoom.com as NBCi, which is partially owned by General Electric’s NBC subsidiary, rolls out beta versions to work out some bugs in the codes.

It isn’t certain exactly how many members are affected by the service disruptions. As part of the integration, NBCi is in the midst re-tallying its member count eliminating any duplication, a company spokesperson said.

Official launch is tentatively scheduled for later in September in conjunction with the NBC’s new fall television season. In addition to the formal launch, NBCi plans to announce new business arrangements to support its online efforts. The spokesperson declined to be specific.

The integration comes as NBCi’s operations, behind the scenes, have already begun cost-cutting initiatives that included lay offs of 170 employees, or 20 percent of the work force.

Currently, visitors to the Snap.com and Xoom.com sites will be greeted with a pop-up window describing the integration of the portal with its sister companies that include sites like Access Hollywood, AllBusiness.com and other NBCi properties.

“As we roll out the beta version of the new NBCi site, you may experience intermittent feature outages,” NBCi tells its visitors.

Snap.com has begun to notify, via email, its members who have registered for MySnap.com that members will be convert into MyNBCi.

XOOM.com or Sharehouse users can still access all of their information using the same username and password as before.

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