CEBU, Philippines - In keeping up with today's "cloud-centric" times, Microsoft recently reinvented its email service, taking shape in the new and improved Outlook.com.
Positioned as an enhanced "cloud first" online communication portal, the new Outlook comes with the added upsides of a virtually unlimited inbox capacity, with integrated support for SkyDrive, Microsoft's online cloud storage service (think of SkyDrive as Microsoft's answer to Dropbox or Google Drive).
This means that with the new Outlook, concerns over the file size limits of email attachments are left at their most minimum of degrees, if not none at all.
Also featuring a cleaner and more organized user interface, the new Outlook is designed to do away with the "workstation clutter" that has made email-oriented tasks a daunting chore, with ample sized boxes, buttons and search forms. The new user interface works well with different screen sizes and different screen resolutions, which is an edge for multiple workstation users.
Apart from its new look and SkyDrive support, users could also readily integrate different social network accounts with their personal Outlook email accounts, with support for Google, Twitter, LinkedIn and Facebook.
This means that users could conveniently see Tweets, messages and/or posts from social network contacts/friends/followers, or could readily disable its social network connection features if necessary.
Office Web Apps, Microsoft's web-accessible productivity suite, is also a featured highlight of the new Outlook, arming users with tools which can be used to edit file attachments directly from the inbox.
With support for web-app versions of Word, PowerPoint, Excel and OneNote, editing Word documents or Excel spreadsheets is made more convenient, fast and easy.
If you're interested in using the new Outlook for yourself, you can easily sign up for a new email account via www.outlook.com. MSN, Hotmail and/or Live account users can also use existing accounts, while Yahoo Mail and Gmail users can readily import address books to their Outlook email accounts.
With reports noting that the new Outlook had garnered 1 million users 6 hours after it was launched last week, a significant number of netizens have dubbed the email service as "a good reason to ditch Gmail".
Given its similarities with Google's offered online communication and productivity solutions, it appears that the new Outlook is intent on making a mark in cyberspace.