Microsoft Office Live Small Business Entices SMBs with Freebies

By Lisa Vaas  |  Posted 2008-02-11 Print this article Print

Office Live Small Business now has almost 600,000 customers worldwide. It's available in the United States, the United Kingdom, France, Germany and Japan.

Microsoft wants to drag online every mom and pop shop it can, and if it has to give away Web hosting, Web site building tools, custom domain names and business-branded e-mail accounts to get them there, that's exactly what it's planning to do.

The company will announce on Feb. 11 that it's collapsing what was once a three-tier product in Microsoft Office Live Small Business -- its suite of Web-based software and services, rolled out 18 months ago and designed to get small businesses up and running online - into one product, with more products and services now offered for free.

That means that those small businesses who sign up for Office Live Small Business will get a free Web site, free e-mail, 5 gigabytes of storage, direct connection and syncing with Outlook, and the ability to use a free intranet for sharing company documents or the use of a password-protected extranet for sharing documents with clients.

Read the full story on eWEEK's Midmarket site.

Lisa Vaas is News Editor/Operations for and also serves as editor of the Database topic center. Since 1995, she has also been a Webcast news show anchorperson and a reporter covering the IT industry. She has focused on customer relationship management technology, IT salaries and careers, effects of the H1-B visa on the technology workforce, wireless technology, security, and, most recently, databases and the technologies that touch upon them. Her articles have appeared in eWEEK's print edition, on, and in the startup IT magazine PC Connection. Prior to becoming a journalist, Vaas experienced an array of eye-opening careers, including driving a cab in Boston, photographing cranky babies in shopping malls, selling cameras, typography and computer training. She stopped a hair short of finishing an M.A. in English at the University of Massachusetts in Boston. She earned a B.S. in Communications from Emerson College. She runs two open-mic reading series in Boston and currently keeps bees in her home in Mashpee, Mass.

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