Hotmail as a free and web based email service was launched at a time when such a service was a novelty. This service was founded in the late nineties, around the time when only one to two other free web based email services like Yahoo were introduced. Most people were dependent on an email subscription service that their internet service providers gave along with a subscription internet service. With the introduction of Hotmail all such shackles were removed. This web based email service was one of a kind, a free service that one could access from any computer that had a working internet connection.
All one had to do was to type in the Hotmail domain address in their web browser to find the Hotmail login page open up or find the link for signing up for a free account.
In order to gain an account with Hotmail one had to simply observe a few steps such as:
- One had to choose a username for their account.
- This had to be followed by a choice of a password that did not have many guidelines to follow.
- Among personal details or information one simply had to enter their first and last name
- The other optional information details could be filled as users wanted.
Once the basic login details were created and one agreed to the basic terms and conditions, one’s Hotmail account was created. The account creation process was simpler in olden times as the service was new and the hazards of account infiltration or malware menaces were not known as yet. After it was introduced Hotmail was bought over by Microsoft. It was then made part of MSN domain. At such a time Hotmail could be accessed through MSN domain as well as through its own domain. Whether one logged in through MSN or through the Hotmail domain, the login procedure was simple:
- One simply had to key in the username and password.
- They could choose the option to stay logged into one’s account.
The above steps were simple and the process of recovering one’s password was even simpler. All one had to do was to click on the link provided to recover one’s password. Usually one’s email account settings had a provision to store details of an alternate email address. The password recovery information would then be sent to this email address when one keyed in this detail correctly.
Soon however, there were several infiltration found in member accounts. Many Hotmail account users realize that their accounts were being hacked into. In order to make the email accounts more secure Microsoft took up several steps. It started to integrate its email services under a unified platform. The first step taken was to introduce the Live domain. Under this platform, Hotmail and MSN came under one domain and several other Microsoft services. At such a time there were several additional measures introduced to make Hotmail a safer email account to access.
After the Live domain Microsoft introduced the Outlook web based email service. Outlook had long been an internal mail server system that was part of the Windows operating system. Microsoft decided to make it a web based service that would be available to all. Hence, non members or those who did not have access to Microsoft could access Outlook as well. Along with introducing Outlook Microsoft also integrated all email and account services under the same domain. Live and Outlook now became synonymous and could help one to log into their account through either of the two domains.
For the Hotmail account users it was a confusing time, but more options opened up for them. They had to sign into their account through Hotmail or MSN prior to the integration process. When the Live domain was introduced, Hotmail account users were redirected to this domain. Hence, even if they typed in Hotmail on their web browser or msn.com, they were redirected to Live domain.
With the introduction of Outlook, the same process remained. Whether one typed in Live, Hotmail or MSN as the domain address in their web browser they would be redirected to Outlook. For those who are existing Hotmail account users, all they need to do is the following:
- Simply log onto outlook.com. Alternately, they can type in Hotmail.com or Live.com that will redirect them to outlook.com.
- Here they will find a common login panel for any Microsoft account holder.
- The first field needs users to type in their full email address as the username.
- The next page redirects them to the page where one needs to key in their account password.
- In case one has forgotten their password, they will find a link to follow to recreate the same.
- The other option is to stay logged into one’s account. Upon clicking this option one does not need to key in their login details every time they wish to enter their Hotmail account.
- There is a Microsoft security code option. If this is activated through the account security settings, all one needs to do is sync a security code that is sent to an app on their phone and that will secure login to one’s account.
With Microsoft having introduced such options, Hotmail account users have more benefits to reap. Their email inbox and other features have changed as per the modern email inbox and layout of Outlook. However, old Hotmail accounts retain all old information and correspondence that users have saved or the folders that users might have created over time.
For those who are new to Hotmail account on the modern Outlook interface, they can sign up for a Hotmail account easily. There is an option to create a new Microsoft account on the main page of Outlook. When one clicks on this link, they are asked to fill out an account creation form. The basic details and inputs remain the same. However, there are certain restrictions on password creation. This needs to be of alphanumeric characters and at least eight characters long. One needs to provide an alternate email address as well as key in a registered phone number to activate the 2-step verification process on their email account.
Sign in procedures has become more secure with Hotmail due to the following changes introduced:
- One needs to choose a strong password that would be a combination of alphanumeric characters.
- The password needs to have special characters as well as should be case sensitive.
- Once these aspects are met, a Hotmail email account is more secure and difficult to break into.
- The two step verification process has been introduced to make the sign in process more secure.
- In such cases one needs to enter certain additional details like an alternate email address and a registered phone number. Both details need to be verified and confirmed. Also, there are two security questions provided to which one needs to provide answers to. All such alternate details come in handy when one has forgotten their account password and needs to recover the same. Microsoft also introduces a security code option. This can be synced with one’s account through an app on the phone. This option can be chosen instead of having to type in a password every time one needs to log into one’s account.
The new domain for Hotmail account holders has several advantages to offer. Not only is the account, logging in process become more secure, but the modern inbox layout has several innovative features to offer. These are same as Outlook; indeed, for those who wish to create a new Hotmail account would be simply choosing a Hotmail extension email address on the same Outlook domain. The unified domain makes it easier to offer common features and amenities to all. Hence, Hotmail account users who log into their account on the new unified platform have access to the following amenities:
- The email inbox layout has an attractive and easy to use interface.
- There are easy email categorization features to avail of.
- One can organize their emails easily.
- Social media account integration allows one to check updates received on accounts like Facebook or LinkedIn.
- Microsoft offers Office suite to users which enable them to edit and attach Word documents or spreadsheets as well as work on PowerPoint presentations on their inbox layout.
The above points highlight the additional benefits that have come to Hotmail account users as Microsoft has integrated the Hotmail domain with Outlook. The new email domain allows one unified access to different Microsoft accounts; hence, if one uses several Microsoft services these can all be accessed with the same Hotmail account ID. This becomes the unified Microsoft account ID for users. When one signs up for other Microsoft services like Xbox or Skype, the same Hotmail account login details can be used to access these accounts. With such features Hotmail account users find enhanced facilities and features to access with their Hotmail account login ID. These are some of the several aspects that have enhanced the use of Hotmail accounts.