Woohoo. Finally got an invite to Windows Live Mail Beta, having applied for it about a month ago.
First impressions – it’s good, and looks and feels like Outlook-lite with the 3-pane window. It has nice clean colours which are easier on the eyes. Some things that we take for granted on a desktop email client are drag-and-drop and shift-click or ctrl-click to select a range of emails – these are all available on Windows Live Mail.
One glaring ommission is the threaded view that’s available in Outlook and Gmail. I’ve come to love that, especially when firing off rapid email conversations with friends.
Though it is faster than regular Hotmail, it still feels sluggish compared to Gmail. However, Windows Live Mail has a lot more functionalities as mentioned above. And both companies approach web-based emails from different angles.
Caveat: Microsoft being Microsoft, Windows Live Mail works best with IE6. Surprise.
The fight for our loyalty is becoming interesting. Microsoft is finally realising that more and more services are becoming web-based and that they will need to innovate in that area. This is a good start.
p.s. I’m not a M$ fanboy ok?! 😛 I work with Linux on my job. But credit where credit’s due. 🙂