Way back in 2003, Microsoft first announced the SPOT watch device, a wrist device that linked up to the MSN Direct Service via an FM radio signal. The SPOT (Smart Personal Objects Technology) watches actually went on sale in 2004 via watch makers such as Fossil. The devices allowed users to get news and weather information, along with stock prices and sports scores, via MSN Direct.
Other devices, such as coffee makers, were developed that also accessed the MSN Direct service. The price at the time to access the service was $9.99 a month or $59 for a year.
The SPOT watch didn't exactly become a huge hit with the general public and in 2008 production of the watches was discontinued. If you still are an owner of a SPOT Watch, the device still worked to give you those snippets of news and other information. Now even that capability has now shut down. The MSN Direct web site has now announced that the service was shut down as of Sunday, January 1. Microsoft had previously announced the shut down in October 2009.
If you still have a subscription to MSN Direct and want to get a refund for the remainder of your time, you had better hustle. Microsoft said its customer service will only respond to such inquires about MSN Direct until January 31.