Bell and Microsoft have officially parted ways in Canada and both are now focused on building their own online brands.
The long-expected dissolution of Bell and MSN’s partnership at industry-leading portal Sympatico.MSN.ca finally happened today with Bell launching Sympatico.ca, and MSN (i.e. Microsoft) debuting MSN.ca.
When Sympatico.MSN.ca launched in 2004, it was a merger of Canada’s top two portals. It went on to dominate as a unique Canadian property logging approximately 18.5 million unique views per month, according to comScore.
But while today’s split is amicable with both parties signing a three-year deal to share traffic and Microsoft’s new Bing search technology, it leaves the number one spot vacant with two large brands in direct competition for visitors.
Google Goes Hollywood
Google is looking at new revenue streams by sprucing up plain-text search ads with video. It has been offering what it calls a "video plus box" link below the standard keyword ad to a select group of entertainment advertisers including Miramax, Electronic Arts, Discovery and Travel Channel. By featuring Hollywood trailers, major distributors are hoping it will result in more interest in their respective films.
Google goes Hollywood