Hotmail is the great grandfather of email services. Launched in 1996 by Sabeer Bhatia and Jack Smith, it was a pioneer of emails as we know them today.
It was acquired by Microsoft in 1997 and since then, has gone through many changes to keep pace with technological changes and user expectations.
So, are Hotmail accounts still active? Can I create and use a Hotmail ID?
Let’s find out!
Is Hotmail Still Around?
Yes, kind of!
Microsoft rebranded Hotmail to Windows Live and later changed it to Outlook.com. This means, users can still create a Hotmail account but it comes under Outlook branding.
It doesn’t have to be. Outlook.com is the official email service from Microsoft and for the sake of users who love the Hotmail brand, you can have an email ID that ends in hotmail.com. Still, it will be accessed through Outlook.com.
In other words, you can use your Hotmail ID to sign in to Microsoft’s email service, but you will have to do it in outlook.live.com.
Do Hotmail Email Addresses Still Work?
If you have a Hotmail address, you can still use it to send and receive messages. Further, you can also link it to your Outlook.com email ID or even your Gmail email address and toggle between the two.
Regardless of whether you have an Outlook.com or Hotmail.com ID, you can use all the features and services that come with Outlook.com.
Brief Background On Hotmail Rebranding Over The Years
After acquiring Hotmail in 1997, Microsoft renamed it MSN Hotmail as a way to compete with America Online (AOL).
Within a few years, MSN Hotmail started facing competition from Yahoo! Mail, and Gmail, and to counter that, Microsoft rebranded it to Windows Live Hotmail. It also changed the front-end extensively using C# and ASP.NET and this paved the way for Azure and Office 365.
As Office 365 started gaining ground, Microsoft decided to bring all its services under one umbrella, so Windows Live Hotmail changed to Outlook.com. With this email service, you can integrate with Microsoft’s other products like Word, SharePoint, OneDrive, Skype, and more.
At the same time, Microsoft has retained the Hotmail ID because of the nostalgia associated with it.
Can You Still Use Your Hotmail Account?
If it is an old Hotmail account, check to see if it’s still active.
As a rule, Microsoft removes any account that has not been active for two years and this includes all emails, attachments, and everything associated with that email ID.
For some reason, if you’re unable to access your account, read through our article to recover your Outlook account.
Otherwise if you have an active Hotmail account, you can use it to send and receive messages.
Will Hotmail Be Fully Discontinued In The Future?
So, is Hotmail going away?
At the time of writing this piece, there has been no announcement from Microsoft in this regard. Currently, people can create a new Hotmail email ID, and send and receive email like how they did three decades back! It may be a little outdated for some users though!