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Microsoft's e-commerce plans put on ice

26 June 2013 - 20:28 by Graham Miller

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Microsoft had apparently been looking to create an e-commerce service which would rival the big hitters like Amazon and eBay, although it has now decided against the launch of its own platform for safe shopping online, according to the Wall Street Journal.

The service was in development under the name of Project Brazil and it was going to use the cash that Microsoft generates through its search engine, Bing, to bring e-commerce to international audiences.

Industry insiders are apparently aware of the many meetings that Microsoft held with a number of online retailers and technology companies, to get Project Brazil off the ground. Its intention was to offer merchants a platform through which consumers could access their products, with a unified shopping cart system allowing for simultaneous checkout transactions and delivery organisation.

Project Brazil would have been built into Microsoft's various software and hardware ecosystems, including Windows 8 and the Xbox One console.

However, this scheme has since been scrapped without any clear explanation provided. A spokesperson for the software giant said that the company will continue to seek out a deeper e-commerce experience through its research and development of new products, which could possibly hint at future platforms offering similar capabilities.

The fact that Microsoft is not going to get into the market for safe shopping online in a big way, may suggest that there is simply too much competition.

It has made headway with its Bing search engine, slicing off some of the market dominated by Google, but the e-commerce industry is a lot more fragmented and divided between a number of major players.

Of course, millions of people still use a Windows-based device to carry out online shopping, although at the moment, Microsoft sees none of the money that is spent.