Microsoft has recently announced that the end of Hotmail is near and the dawn of a new emailing system, known as Outlook, is almost here. Hotmail was first introduced way back in 1996 and sparked a revolution. A revolution where people could have their own email addresses for life that were completely independent of work and the public. 2004 saw Google introduce Gmail with its larger inboxes and nifty tools, but since then not a whole lot has changed and the dominance of the email has been steadily eroded away by the onset of the social networking website.
Outlook.com is designed to reinvent the concept of the email, and a special preview has been released on the Microsoft Outlook blog on the 31st of July 2012. Outlook has now branched out, according to the blog, from business use and as a desktop application all the way to a personalised email service.
Outlook is designed to move away from the browser that current emailing systems dominate. Microsoft has recognised and subsequently calculated that 20% of all the time spent on a smartphone is spent looking at email. That’s why Outlook is going to be transferred to the tablet and the mobile device. It’s cloud-enabled so emails can be accessed from anywhere in the world.
Unlike other emailing systems, the interface has been shown to be clean and concise with only the important functions visible. For example, there has been a removal of 60% of the pixels from the header, which has translated to 30% more messages on one page. The removal of display ads and massive search boxes has also been seen in the most recent preview.
The popularity of the social networking site has shot to unimaginable heights, and shockingly it’s stayed there. That’s why Outlook is engineered to take advantage of this. The popularity of the social network has been attributed to the fact that people can remain in contact all the time. Outlook has combined the best of the social network and the email by providing the first-ever email service that has connections to Skype, Google, Facebook, and Twitter.
The inbox for Outlook will operate very much like Facebook in that users will be able to see status updates from friends and new photos as they are uploaded. Video and text chats will also be available with an updated contact list.
Strength and Power
It’s been revealed on the Outlook blog that 50% of all email tends to be newsletters with 20% being social network updates. The idea behind Outlook is that most email inboxes are overloaded with pointless messages that don’t need to be there. That’s why a feature has been added to Outlook that will automatically sort out all the newsletters, the social networking updates, messages from contacts, and everything else. Users will now be able to have complete control over what they see and when.
One feature that made Gmail so popular was the fact that collaboration was possible through Google Documents. But with Outlook a number of Office Wep Apps encompassing programs like Word and Excel have been made available at no charge. This collaboration software is a major advancement on Google’s version and is directly connected to SkyDrive; for storing and sending documents online.
Complete control is given over the concept of privacy when it comes to Outlook. Microsoft won’t be spending time scanning personal emails or sending the information to other companies who want to target their advertisements. Furthermore, ads have been completely removed from personal conversations. Control is given over how much, or how little, information is shared with social network entities. And it’s this control that is expected to make this the next advance in emailing technology.
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