Hotmail Dead at the Age of 16

Microsoft transitions to the new email service, which now has more than 400 million active accounts.

RIP, Hotmail.

Sixteen years after it first launched, the email service has been shut down by Microsoft as the company transitions over to the new, which thus far has amassed more than 400 million active accounts in an upgrade from Hotmail.

"Our belief is that as people start using the new experience, they will come to love it even more than they loved Hotmail," said Dick Craddock, Group Program Manager at, in a posting on the Outlook Blog. "We are keenly listening to what our customers have to say, and we'll make the right set of adjustments to ensure that we make the experience as great as it can be. So to all those providing feedback: thank you and keep it coming."

Updates include a cleaner design -- which removes the large display ads that populated Hotmail -- and features such as  a new calendar and app, two-step verification and the capability to send messages from other email addresses. Also: the integration of Skype and SkyDrive, a cloud service, into

Users can still hold on to their existing Hotmail addresses or get a new Outlook address.

"It has been an amazing journey and we've been honored to provide you with a great mail experience for many years," said Craddock. "When we launched the original preview of, we knew that we were committing to building the world's best email with a brand and product experience that spans from consumers all the way to the largest organizations. We're excited to have you join as we write the next chapter in modern email from Microsoft."