Microsoft opens up Windows 7 to advertisers

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Microsoft opens up Windows 7 to advertisers

Redmond sells desktop branding experience.

Microsoft has taken the unprecedented step of allowing marketers to re-brand its new Windows 7 operating system.

Redmond announced yesterday new “Windows 7 theme experiences” which are currently being trialled by a handful of big name brands, including Ducati, Porsche and Twentieth Century Fox.

The Windows Theme Experience includes Internet Explorer 8 add-ons, Windows 7 and Windows Vista Web-connected gadgets, Windows 7 backgrounds and borders, and operating system audio elements, all designed to help advertisers better connect with consumers.

The Windows Personalisation Gallery, meanwhile, gives advertisers the opportunity to use backgrounds, slide shows, borders and application audio elements to push their brands via the desktop experience.

“The new Windows Theme Experience and Windows Personalisation Gallery in Windows 7 allow consumers to customise their technology to reflect the things in life they are most passionate about,” said Darren Huston, corporate vice president of the Consumer & Online organisation at Microsoft.

“These are great examples of Microsoft innovation and technology coming together to enable top global brands to reach audiences in new and interesting ways.”

Although the move may strike some observers as a strange one for Microsoft, which has never sold desktop space before in this way, it clearly shows the firm seeking to boost income from areas hitherto untapped.

The themes can be downloaded from the Personalisation Gallery, although they are being promoted on an opt-in basis.

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