Microsoft's Hotmail gets long-overdue makeover into Windows Live Hotmail

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Microsoft’s Hotmail email service hasn’t changed a great deal since its introduction in 1996 – until now, with the launch of Windows Live Hotmail.

The new service drifts closer to Microsoft Outlook, offering drag-and-drop, a preview pane you can customise and auto-complete addresses. It’s only claimed to better protection against spam, along with more room for your genuine messages – 2GB for a basic account.

A yearly subscription ($19.99 in the US) offers an increased 4GB of storage and access to other POP3 accounts. And later this month, all users will be able to connect their Hotmail accounts with their Outlook 2003 and 2007 programs using Microsoft Office Outlook Connector.

And of course, upgrading still gives you access to your existing contacts and messages.

Hotmail website

Dave Walker