Microsoft won't update its Money Plus personal finance software, as it has annually for 17 years, and has pulled the program from retail, saying it will now distribute it only electronically, according to postings on the company's support forum.
"The feedback we are hearing is that the incremental updates to the software don't merit a new product every year," the company said in a message added to the Money forum by Bob Peel, a Microsoft MVP (Most Valuable Professional) at the request of Microsoft. "Given this, we have decided against releasing a 2009 version of Money Plus."
The current version, Money Plus 2008, will also soon vanish from store shelves, as Microsoft has decided to stop selling boxed copies of the program.
"In response to our retail partners' needs, consumer behavior and business efficiencies, Microsoft is focusing distribution efforts for Microsoft Money Plus software online via download and discontinuing traditional box sales of the software at retail," the message posted by Peel continued.
"Microsoft Money Plus will continue to be available at retail outlets while supplies last. We have stopped shipping new product to retail outlets," the company said.
Microsoft has struggled for years to compete with Intuit and its Quicken product, which owns the lion's share of the market.
In the message, Microsoft did not say when it would next update Money Plus, or what its update schedule going forward would look like. Nor did it explicitly promise that a new version would eventually be released, saying that "future release dates [to be determined]."
Microsoft did not immediately reply to requests for additional comment.