Internet Start served as the default home page for Internet Explorer and offered basic information such as news, weather, sports, stocks, entertainment reports, links to other websites on the Internet, articles by Microsoft staff members, and software updates for Windows.

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The company also overhauled its online software and services due to increasing competition from rivals such as Yahoo! Some of the MSN services affected by the rebranding included MSN Hotmail, which became Windows Live Hotmail (now Outlook.com); MSN Messenger, which became Windows Live Messenger (now integrated into Skype); MSN Search, which became Live Search (now known as Bing); MSN Virtual Earth, which became Live Search Maps (now Bing Maps); MSN Spaces, which became Windows Live Spaces; MSN Alerts, which became Windows Live Alerts; and MSN Groups, which became Windows Live Groups.

Some other services, such as MSN Direct, remained a part of the MSN family without transitioning to Windows Live.

In 1999 the largely underutilized 'MSN.com' domain name was combined with Microsoft Internet Start and reinvented as both a web portal and as the brand for a family of sites produced inside Microsoft's Interactive Media Group.

The new website put MSN in direct competition with sites such as Yahoo! Because the new format opened up MSN's content to the world for free, the Internet service provider and subscription service was renamed MSN Internet Access at that time.

MSN's Hotmail and Messenger services were promoted from the portal, which provided a central place for all of MSN's content.

MSN Search (now Bing), a dedicated search engine, launched in 1999.In addition to its original MSN Dial-up service, Microsoft has used the 'MSN' brand name for a wide variety of products and services over the years, notably Hotmail (later Outlook.com), Messenger (which was once synonymous with 'MSN' in Internet slang and has now been replaced by Skype), and its web search engine, which is now Bing, and several other rebranded and discontinued services.The current website and suite of apps offered by MSN was first introduced by Microsoft in 2014 as part of a complete redesign and relaunch.In 2012, Microsoft began to phase out the Windows Live brand, referring to each service separately by its individual brand name without any 'Windows' prefix or association.The new MSN portal features a new version of the logo that follows a style similar to other current Microsoft products.MSN (stylized as msn) is a web portal and related collection of Internet services and apps for Windows and mobile devices, provided by Microsoft and launched on August 24, 1995, the same release date as Windows 95.