Microsoft planning full-screen Windows Live Messenger adverts

This story was Neowin's April fools day story for 2010.

Neowin has learnt that Microsoft is planning full-screen advertising within its flagship Windows Live Messenger product.

The latest internal build (15.3.2689.110) for Windows Live Messenger 2010 compiled only last week contains the new advertising. When users first launch the client they will be presented with a pop over video commercial with an option to cancel the advert (clicking on an X). The commercials pop-up and cover the contacts list until a user skips the advert or waits until the 30 second commercial has finished.

Videos will be provided by Microsoft's MSN Video service and will include movie trailers, local news clips and product commercials. The move is likely to be a controversial one that could be met with criticism from Windows Live Messenger users. Neowin understands that the full-screen adverts are only at the testing stage and that Microsoft may offer a subscription or one off payment for users to remove adverts altogether.

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64 Comments

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well guys, if this is an april fools joke, then Neowin may have backlash. I just did a search on the build number and lots of sites are reporting it as real and using Neowin as their source for the information.

dave164 said,
I think someone needs to make a comment saying that it is an April fools...

But LOL at everyone thinking it real.


I think it's time for the article to be updated as an April, if only just to rub these othersites noses in it.

There are so many different ways to instantly communicate with friends, family and colleagues that I find myself using Windows Live Messenger less and less. The introduction of full screen advertising may finally give me the nudge I need to uninstall it altogether.

I actually hope this is real Now everyone will switch to another client which makes me very happy... WLM must die!

PeRKoniX said,
I actually hope this is real Now everyone will switch to another client which makes me very happy... WLM must die!

Time to switch to aMSN

Migra said,
So in the US the jokes day is April 1st? (didn't know that) here in Mexico is December 29 I guess XD

It is a different day in every country.

You know, i read the title and thought '"wouldn't surprise me".

Good thing it was an April Fools joke because i can think of a lot of backlash coming from something like this.

Digsby is better anyways

Changing everyone's avatar in the forums is about the best its going to get for April Fools jokes on here.

Nothing enriches the soul more than advertising, especially full-screen video advertising. Microsoft gets it right again

i am expecting this message: this content it not available at your geographic region.

Too me this is going to be intrusive and a bit of a put off.

Heh .. don't give Microsoft ideas !

I was looking forward to something like "EU forces Apple to open iPhone to other OS's" ... or something like that ...

Even if it wasn't fake, who the hell actually closes the Messenger client? Don't most people just sign out and leave it running?

Haha, oh well, props for the good 'shop at least.

But I'll be exhausted after this day. Maybe I'll have to take a web break.

helios01 said,
I actually wouldn't be surprised if this happened for real.

Indeed, it's kinda like those Onion articles. Funny but also hitting uncomfortably close to the truth.

thank you microsoft. I will watch all your commercial. Looking forward to try this new feature love love it

I was lookin around on my favorite sites to see if I found any April Fools stuff and finally found one here. Good deal.

oh i do hope this is in fact an april fools joke (lame as it is) if it isnt then i will be ditiching it next time it forces me to update

Telemachus said,
haha, would be awesome if they can actually do that on April Fools day on our current clients

Too many people would flip out. I know I would.

Decaytion said,
Happy April Fools!

I'm taking as that too until the day is done and if it's still going around in a few days, it's time to start looking for a new messenger client.

Messenger has been ad-supported forever, but never like this. If this comes out as compulsory they are gonna get a LOT of criticism from Joe Users and techies alike. How they expect this to be perceived as an "update".

I'm all for supporting companies through advertising if its non-intrusive, like that used on Neowin, or the current ads on Messenger. The rollovers are a little annoying, but this will take the ****.