Peter Laudati has a good post on his blog about the Microsoft on-line mapping service. I really agree with the point he makes. I don’t know what the mapping service is really called but you can check it out here. I’ve used this service before. If you haven’t used it, it is Microsoft’s answer to MapQuest or Google Maps. The product is pretty slick and the aerial photos on it may be the best on the web. And it has some great 3D features. But I am not going to debate the pros and cons of one mapping service vs another. The biggest problem with the Microsoft service is the name. The website says “Live Search” at the top and “Microsoft Virtual Earth” at the bottom. And the URL is any of the many url’s that you used to find the site. So which is it? And what does Live Search mean? How would I know that has anything to do with maps? Plus they changed the name a bunch of times including local.live.com (or was it live.local.com? Who can remember?) and maps.msn.com, etc. You would think a monster company like Microsoft would have a better idea of how to brand products properly. No one has to wonder what “Google Maps” or “MapQuest” means.
In my opinion, this is not the first similar mistake Microsoft has made. I am a happy C# developer and I love .Net, but I hate the name! .Net??? What were they thinking? What does that mean?
There is definitely a lesson to be learned here. I hate to say it but no matter how great are code is, without good marketing guys we are screwed!