Way back in 1996, it used to go by the name of HoTMaiL, but when Microsoft snapped up the web based email service, it changed the name but more importantly changed the way people could get personal email access online.
Now Microsoft has finally decided to bid farewell to Hotmail replacing it with Outlook.com where users will be able to access Twitter, Gmail, Facebook and LinkedIn contacts amongst other new features.
Available to preview at www.outlook.com and for current Hotmail users to migrate to, we've picked the five best new additions that Microsoft hopes will give Google's Gmail a run for its money.
1. New interface
Aiming for a cleaner and less cluttered user experience, there is clearly more than a hint of Windows 8 in terms of its design. Microsoft claims that the header now has 60% fewer pixels and 30% more messages which should make more room for your inbox content.
2. Social network integration
We have already mentioned that Outlook.com will bring access to Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Google and Skype (soon) which means that you’ll be able to see status updates and Tweets from your friends. Skype integration will also mean you can make video calls to someone from your constantly up-to-date contact list.
3. Unified experience
Using Microsoft’s Exchange ActiveSync, Outlook.com will enable users to control and access email as well as their Outlook calendar straight from a smartphone and tablet.
As well as automatically organizing contacts, newsletters and social updates for you, the new Sweep feature will help get rid of the stuff you don’t want like any Spam that has crept through for instance with a ‘few, simple clicks’.
5. SkyDrive and app support
With the rise in popularity of competitors such as Dropbox and Google Drive, the SkyDrive cloud system will be a key feature of Outlook, helping users to share documents securely. As for attempting to overhaul Google Docs, Microsoft’s Office Web Apps, including Word, Excel and PowerPoint, are included.
What are your first impressions of Outlook.com? Do you miss Hotmail? Let us know your thoughts in the comments section below.