Much to our surprise, MSN released version 9.5 of MSN Explorer/MSN Internet Access to subscribers as an update on Friday. The release appears to fix a number of issues surrounding upgrades to Windows Internet Explorer 7 and Windows Live Messenger. The release also introduces Digital Image Suite as a new piece of software to the suite MSN Premium was originally advertised as a benefit.
At launch Microsoft said, "If purchased separately, the services combined in MSN Premium would cost more than $350 a year and require customers to independently manage and update them." With an MSN subscription, Microsoft also bundles a premium version of Encarta and MSN Money online, Microsoft Office Outlook Connector and PictureIt! Express 9. Now PictureIt! Express 9 has finally been upgraded to the Standard Edition of Digital Image Suite. MSN has updated the core, MSN Explorer, as well as Outlook Connector, but the original suite of software has remained the same until now. Unfortunately, with the update of 9.5, there is no update for Outlook Connector compatibility with Outlook 2007, but Vista has been reported to work fine with MSN Premium.
- New Microsoft® Phishing Filter service helps block known phishing or fraudulent Web sites and allows you to report new sites or provide feedback to the Microsoft® Phishing Filter Web site about potential Phishing Web sites.
- Search now enables users of Windows® Desktop Search to search your PC for images, music files, and documents fast. The new Search bar allows you to search the web Web or your PC right from the dashboard. Includes a list of recent searches on a quick pick list!
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