Microsoft introduces Live Folders and Live Photo Gallery

Microsoft has been steadily rolling out new "Live" items since its introduction, there were two that got released late last night, with more planned to come out this summer.

Live Folders has been showing its face since around May, and are finally ready for some outside testing. The "storage on a cloud" Live Drive service, as it was coined earlier, will provide users with a free 500mb of online storage. (cough, is that enough for the average user nowadays?) The storage was built for document storage only, so Microsoft isn't betting on the fact that people will be stuffing their spaces with multimedia materials like videos and music.

The Live Photo Gallery replaces the standard Vista Photo Gallery when installed. This allows users to control, manage, burn a picture or movie or create photo stitches, where photos are seamlessly stitched together to make a panoramic photo, relatively easy. It's an upgrade to the Windows Photo Gallery that comes standard with any Vista install. The main benefit to this application seems to be the ease of use for uploading images to Live Spaces, and videos to Soapbox.

More Windows Live services are said to roll out throughout the summer, as well as a Windows Live Suite that will include all of the Live services in one clean install.

Limited managed betas of the service will begin rolling out as of today with 5000 to 10000 testers, so look out for them if you're interested.

More coverage on this new release can be found here, here and here.

Take a look at some screenshots of the Live Folders interface:

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