Microsoft Vine beta to end

Microsoft Vine, their online service aimed at helping people stay in contact during times of emergency, is coming to an end on October 11th 2011.

I signed up to the beta when it was announced and had a cursory look around…and then never logged in again. I suspect this is what the majority of people did and that will be a big factor in it being shut down.

I think the problem comes in that it isn’t really needed on a day-to-day basis; people have Twitter/Facebook etc to stay in contact and then, in times of emergency, logging into Microsoft Vine is almost certainly the last thing anyone will think of. No –one is quite sure what it does, it isn’t ubiquitous at all (in the way Twitter is) and so never gets used.

The full email sent out is:

Thank you for your valuable collaboration and participation in the Microsoft Vine beta program over the past year.
Releasing products and services in beta form gives us a way to learn and adapt our technologies in a real world environment, to gather valuable feedback from our customers and partners and ensure that new models are sustainable. And more specifically, the Microsoft Vine invitation-only beta program was designed to garner participation and subsequent feedback from consumers, communities and governments about the challenges they face today and explore how technology can improve and enhance communications.
Despite positive feedback from customers like you over the course of Vine’s private beta, Microsoft has made the decision to discontinue Microsoft Vine effective October 11, 2010. After this date, you will no longer be able to access Microsoft Vine. We suggest that you record any contact information currently stored in Vine, prior to October 11th.
The decision to discontinue future development of Microsoft Vine was not easily made. Multiple options were thoroughly explored and evaluated with rigor and in the end it was determined that Microsoft Vine is not sustainable as a standalone offering.
Thank you again for your valuable feedback on this product. The key learnings acquired over the past year from the Vine beta will be used to inform and strengthen future product concepts and offerings.  If you have any questions or concerns, please email vinemail@microsoft.com.

“determined that Microsoft Vine is not sustainable as a standalone offering”

This could well mean that parts of this experiment will be integrated into future offerings…perhaps Office Talk (should that ever come about)…maybe even Outlook and Sharepoint?

If you used Vine – let us know!

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