MSNBC.com becomes NBCNews.com as Microsoft and NBC end partnership

NBC and Microsoft, who joined forces in the mid-90s, are parting ways, and as a result, MSNBC.com became NBCNews.com last night. Microsoft, who had a 50 percent stake in the site, will reportedly receive some $300 million in the divorce from Comcast, the company that controls NBC.

Steve Capus, the president of NBC News, said that with the separation, “we will fully own our digital businesses.”

“It’s undeniable how big a part of all of our businesses the digital properties are going to be,” Capus told The New York Times. “We think we have a much better opportunity to shape them, and frankly grow the news division over all, if we have direct control over all of it.”

MSNBC.com will reportedly be reborn early next year as a stand-alone site for the MSNBC cable channel. Microsoft hasn’t had a stake in the channel since 2005.

OS X Mountain Lion launching on July 25? 9to5Mac thinks so

OS X Mountain Lion, which went gold last week, will likely land in stores on Wednesday, July 25, according to 9to5Mac, who’s been told that Apple’s retail stores will receive updates the night before.

One employee tells us that it is basically just a few guys running around with the master image installing it on every Mac.

9to5Mac concedes that it’s not unheard of for Apple’s staff to burn the midnight oil on Tuesday nights, but with last year’s schedule in mind (OS X Lion dropped the day after the company’s Q3 earnings call, which is set for July 24 this y

With Windows 8, Microsoft might ditch the pricey retail version, offer only OEM and upgrade copies

Today, if you want to install Windows 7, you have three options: You can can upgrade from your current version of Windows for $110, you can start fresh with an OEM edition for $100, or you can drop $180 on a retail copy that includes 90 days of customer support. With Windows 8, though, rumor has it Microsoft will ditch the priciest option, leaving users to choose between upgrading for $40 and installing an OEM edition, the price of which isn’t yet clear. The latter, although technically intended for system builders and often bundled with hardware, is frequently sold separately, too, and it’s always cheaper than its retail counterpart.

In other words, if the rumor’s true, it’s good news for consumers, who stand to save some coin.