Microsoft’s Hotmail e-mail platform has been around for quite some time. In the last decade, millions of people have accessed the platform for their e-mail needs. The service was abruptly ended on May 2 because all users were forced to switch to the newer Outlook.com platform. Users can still access their Hotmail accounts, but the entire interface is now changed to Outlook.
Microsoft wrote in a blog post: “Today, we’re excited to announce that we’ve completed upgrading all Hotmail customers to Outlook.com. Coupled with the growing organic excitement for Outlook.com, this has pushed us to over 400 million active Outlook.com accounts, including 125 million that are accessing email, calendar and contacts on a mobile device using Exchange ActiveSync.”
Fortunately, most Internet users aren’t going to miss Hotmail too much. The service has been lagging behind Yahoo! Mail and Google’s Gmail for quite some time now. Outlook provides a refreshing experience and user interface for its users. Plus, old Hotmail users can utilize the Simple Mail Transfer Protocol to receive their e-mails on compatible devices. The new platform is integrated with SkyDrive, a cloud storage service from Microsoft.
Outlook Group Product Manager Dick Craddock addressed the change, writing:
“Of course, whenever a widely-used consumer service makes any substantial change, there will always be some folks that don’t like it, and that shows up in the feedback, too. It’s gratifying in a sense because it means those customers loved the previous set of changes we made. With a communication service that is constantly evolving, we try to strike the right balance between bringing out major improvements and keeping true to what our customers love.”
In the end, the switch from Hotmail to Outlook won’t cause too many problems for most users. The older service has declined in use over the years anyway. Outlook provides new features that better compete with Yahoo! and Gmail, too. Many people considered Hotmail dead a few years ago. With that in mind, this new change won’t surprise the majority of users for more than a few seconds.
Hotmail Is Really, Officially Dead As Of Today (MSFT)