New Delhi: Microsoft has silently launched its social network So.Cl, which has been in private beta since December 2011. The site is now out of beta and is available to all users.
So.cl, pronounced "social", is an experimental research project, developed by Microsoft's FUSE Labs, focused on exploring the possibilities of social search for the purpose of learning.
So.cl combines social networking and search, to help people find and share interesting web pages in the way students do when they work together. To encourage interaction and collaboration, So.cl provides rich media sharing, and real time sharing of videos via "video parties."
"We expect students to continue using products such as Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and other existing social networks, as well as Bing, Google and other search tools," said Microsoft in its FAQ section, adding, "We hope to encourage students to reimagine how our everyday communication and learning tools can be improved, by researching, learning and sharing in their everyday lives."
By default, searches in So.cl are shared publicly. Your searches on So.cl are viewable by other So.cl users and will also be available to third parties. And, the So.cl search experience is powered by Bing.
"In its December 2011 report, Microsoft asserted the site is not meant to compete with Facebook or search engines, but to allow students to share materials for academic purposes," as reported by Mashable.
Users can log in with Facebook or Microsoft Live accounts.