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Microsoft discontinues Expression Web

Microsoft’s web design suite will be discontinued.

Microsoft has announced that Expression Web – the company’s web design and HTML application- will be discontinued. The latest release was Expression Web 4, Service Pack 2 which was released in July 2011.


An unsupported version of Expression Web 4 is now available as a free download. Customers who previously purchased Expression Web will receive support through the established support lifecycle.

Microsoft Expression Web was part of the greater Expression suite which included Expression Encoder, Expression Design and Expression Blend.

Expression is a fairly recent software brand for Microsoft, having been first announced in 2005 with the first product, Microsoft Expression Studio, released in 2007. Expression Web grew out of Microsoft Front Page, which was launched in 1997.

Expression Web logo

Expression Web 4 will be replaced with Visual Studio 2012, which is considerably more expensive. Visual Studio 2012 Professional sells for AU$724 (US$760, €571, £479, ¥68,527).

Adobe’s Dreamweaver application now remains as the sole professional HTML and web design application for semi-professionals and hobbyists. Adobe Dreamweaver CS6 sells for AU$380 (US$400) which is considerably more than the price Microsoft charged for Expression Web 4. Microsoft also offers the minimalist WebMatrix programme as a free download.

Microsoft has clearly decided to focus solely on professional web designers which was a pity. Expression Web 4 was a good programme, although a few small bugs remained. Unfortunately the programme failed to gain market share, despite Microsoft’s best efforts.



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