Microsoft to launch online store

USA Today is reporting that Microsoft is planning an online store to sell Windows-compatible products ó and promoting it in prime real estate right on the Windows XP start menu.
The Redmond, Wash.-based software giant said Monday that it plans a fall launch for Windows Marketplace, a shopping and downloading site that will allow users to buy hardware and software for use with Microsoft’s dominant Windows operating system.
Microsoft and its partner, CNET Networks, won’t actually sell the products directly, said Susanne Peterson, a director in Microsoft’s Windows group.
Instead, the site will provide customer reviews and other information about computers, software and other gadgets, and links to online merchants such as Circuit City or Best Buy, where the consumer can make purchases, she said.