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Windows Live@edu: Plan is to catch them young

When Google launched GMail for Domains, they picked the San José City College as their testing playground. Microsoft took a step further and launched a similar college hosting email service called Windows Live@edu.

While Google experimented with just a single college, Microsoft managed to get 72 colleges sign-up for the Windows Live@edu service.

Live@edu provides a familiar interface to many students as it is patterned after Hotmail. However, students do not receive a or e-mail address, as the accounts it carry the domain of their respective school.

Microsoft move is clearly aimed at creating loyal Windows Live users while they are still in college. Another potential source of revenue is advertising. Microsoft promises most colleges not to display ads while the students are in school, but then will turn on the ads once they graduate, creating a pool of young, educated and potentially wealthy consumers for advertisers to target.

Sources: CNet News | BetaNews