Microsoft is expected to confirm a deal later today that would see video search engine Blinkx power portions of the MSN and Live.com sites.
Unlike YouTube, which allows any web user to upload videos, Blinkx is a search engine which indexes video found elsewhere on the internet.
The company claims its technology provides more accurate results than web portals Yahoo and Google. It employs voice-recognition software to search the audio content of videos using what executives call "contextual phonetics”.
Although largely focused on video, Blinks also indexes audio content, including podcasts, and claims nearly 6 million hours of content is available through its portal overall.
Microsoft is to pay a licensing fee to use Blinkx’s technology, which is already the basis for the video-searching capabilities of a number of other online media sites, including AOL, ITN and Reuters.