Microsoft is getting to work on the titanic project of unifying all of its services. Along with Windows Live Messenger’s well-known integration with Skype, and consequent termination, Microsoft has been working on another major change in recent months – migrating every Hotmail account to its new home: Outlook. Don’t fret if the inbox looks different – everything is designed to offer more complete, secure, and reliable support for extra features such as SkyDrive. Adapt or die, as the saying goes.
Microsoft began working on moving everything over in the summer of 2012 when it offered Hotmail users the option to use the infrastructure of the new email service Outlook early, following its move to distance itself from the view that it is an old and out-of-date brand. The change was necessary, even more so when taking into account the complete renovation of Microsoft products that was going to come once Windows 8 was released.
Today, almost a year later, the complete migration is a reality. The service has activated all the Hotmail domain accounts, and Outlook already has 400 million active users. Of these, 125 access their email on a smartphone. Even still, it doesn’t reach the status of Gmail, its most direct competitor, which over a year ago said it had 425 million registered email accounts.
As the majority of you have already figured out, when you access a hotmail.com URL, it automatically redirects you to outlook.com. The change, in addition to being obviously aesthetic and similar to the look of Microsoft’s new products, brings many improvements with it. That being said, you remail accounts won’t be altered, so even though you use the new interface, you will maintain the @hotmail.com addresses.
One of the most important improvements is the ability to send emails using SMTP protocol, which now allows you to use Outlook to send emails from other email services, and, finally, measure up to Google when it comes to the ability to use several email accounts simultaneously in one convenient environment.
The other great feature is that SkyDrive, the cloud storage service, has been completely integrated, and now allows you to upload and download files directly from your inbox. You can also attach files to an email that are stored on your online account directly.
Undoubtedly, it is a major step for Microsoft when it comes to being a serious competitor to the Gmail/Drive duo. All that’s left is to see which one consumers will choose. Up until now, the tendency was to create Gmail accounts for the professional environment, and the old Hotmail for personal use. Will this pattern change?
Official Website | http://www.outlook.com