Tech Terms: Hotmail

Formerly called Hotmail (Windows Live Hotmail) is one of the most popular free online email services, provided by Microsoft. Hotmail is a Webmail service and users can access it from any web browser anywhere in the world with an Internet connection, username and password.

What happened to Hotmail?
In 2012 the Windows Live Hotmail service was renamed to Outlook.com. The http://www.hotmail.com URL now redirects users to the main sign in page for all Microsoft accounts, including Store, OneDrive, MSN, Skype, Outlook.com and others.

History of Hotmail
Hotmail was launched in 1996 and was the first free web-based email service. Founded by Sabeer Bhatia and Jack Smith, it was originally spelled HoTMaiL, putting emphasis on the “HTML” in the name. Microsoft acquired Hotmail in 1997. In August, 2012, Microsoft revamped Hotmail and renamed the service as Outlook.com
When Hotmail first launched, the free accounts offered features such as spam filters and enhanced virus scanning and storage up to 250-MB. When Microsoft acquired the email service, Hotmail users were also provided with a schedule calendar and the capability to save contact lists in an address book. Users could choose to pay a subscription fee to upgrade their Hotmail account.

Today, the Outlook.com service provides virtually unlimited storage for free, connections to Skype, Facebook, Twitter, Google and LinkedIn, mobile access, built-in search and spam filtering. You can also use Outlook to send and receive Outlook.com email.

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