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The BBC and Microsoft have reached a professional understanding that would ensure BBC changes as fast as the technology.

The "memorandum of understanding" identifies common areas of interest and where an alliance could be developed.

For example, projects could see the BBC consult Microsoft in web 2.0 design for their website and associated media content.

Microsoft director of new media said: "Microsoft is not just a key supplier to the BBC, it is also a key gateway to audiences that the BBC needs to reach through Web services it runs like MSN and Windows Live Messenger."

The BBC website content is expected to be revamped to work in all the Microsoft players, including game console Xbox 360.