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MySpace, Microsoft ink two partnerships

The News Corp.-owned social network's developer platform will now support Silverlight, and a MySpace Mobile app will be available for Windows Mobile for the first time.

MySpace announced Monday a twofold partnership with Microsoft: first, a MySpace mobile application for Windows Mobile phones, and second, support for Microsoft's Silverlight technology in the News Corp.-owned social network's developer platform.

The Windows Mobile application will be available this summer for Windows Mobile 6.1 phones and then more broadly in the fall. It'll be preloaded on Windows Mobile phones manufactured by LG, too. The app joins existing MySpace mobile products for iPhone, Android, BlackBerry, Sidekick, Palm, and Nokia handsets.

As for the Silverlight announcement, this means that developers building applications for MySpace's platform--which is based on the Google-created OpenSocial standard--have access to Adobe Flash competitor.

The announcements themselves are fairly mundane. But here's what's really interesting: Microsoft has invested $240 million in Facebook, which was at one point the second-place name in social networking--behind MySpace. But while MySpace still has more users in the U.S., Facebook is now significantly bigger worldwide.

In recent months, perhaps as a reaction to Facebook's explosive growth and domination of the social-networking landscape, MySpace has been making numerous efforts to return to its roots as a music and media hub.