This week saw Microsoft unveil an updated version of their public email product called Hotmail. If you are a child of the Internet, then you most probably have a hotmail email address or previously had one. Let’s be blunt for a moment: email is the one thing that is making everyone miserable. No matter your email client or whether you access your email via a smartphone, the process is pretty labour intensive. You, see email in inbox, open email and then either respond to it or delete it.
Microsoft, as crazy as this may seem, are slowly reverting to the “Gates era” Microsoft. Steve Ballmer is not everyone’s cup of tea but they have made some very clever acquisitions. Skype will be a great addition to their Xbox platform and I would not be surprised if we see it in some form inside Outlook.
Oh yes, they are also headed to the cloud with their productivity suite called Microsoft Office. The name change may seem to be irrelevant but I think it is genius. Suddenly, their popular email client will be getting a lot more word of mouth and marketing spend. I also believe the timing of this announcement is no accident. Google’s product (gmail) is slowly grinding to a halt and if Outlook.com wins then I can see a lot more users heading to Microsoft’s offering.
Who said email is boring? The big technology companies are fighting to get users using their email products which leads to a very interesting period ahead for users.