Symantec's Norton 360 shipping next month

Symantec's Norton 360 shipping next month

Retailers have begun taking orders for Symantec's next-generation desktop security software, and the product is set to ship in the middle of next month, according to

Symantec has been working on the software for more than a year and is heavily marketing it as an alternative to Microsoft's Windows Live OneCare and McAfee's Total Protection 2007.

Like its competitors, Norton 360 can be used to back up files, and the software also delivers new encryption, hard drive clean-up, and password-protection features.

The software, which is sold on an annual subscription basis, has been beta tested by more than 100,000 users since it was released in beta late last November.

Norton 360, which can be used by as many as three PCs simultaneously, is list-priced at US$76.99, but Symantec is offering a $20 rebate, putting the price at $56.99. That's a lower list price than McAfee's comparable Total Protection software, which lists at $99.99, but after rebates and pricing breaks, a three-license version of Total Protection can be had on for just $39.99.

Windows Live OneCare has the lowest list price of the three products at just US$49.95. It can be purchased on for $37.49.

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