Microsoft has plastered Hotmail with yet more updates, after customers continued to complain about the firm’s recent shaky overhaul of its free web email service. The software vendor didn’t want to draw too much attention to those gripes, by instead saying it had responded to user “feedback”. But since the re-launch of Hotmail …
“We’ve kept ourselves busy this summer,” said the company’s Hotmail group program manager Dick Craddock.
Would that be the new busy?
The most annoying feature of Hotmail is that after deleting an email, instead of returning to the Inbox it displays the next message. I've hated this for years, I've hated it in Outlook, I hate it everywhere.
Every time Hotmail announces a "major" revamp I go check whether they have made this stupid behavior optional, discover that they haven't, and go back to forwarding my hotmail to gmail.
having been fortunate enought to get my hotmal account in 1997, I'm allowed to use Outlook/Outlook Express/.Windows Mail to access it. So AFAIAC it's just another mailbox.
One pet hate of mine is companies that roll out new, untested services, telling us how exciting and wonderful they are, and completely remove any chance of the old one surviving. Before it even happens, they *KNOW* they will never roll back to the old. This it's not a test, it's an enforced change.
For an enforced change, the replacement has to be equivalent or better than the original, which means lots and lots and lots of voluntary user testing FIRST. A couple of engineers going "Yeah, works pretty much the same, I think" is not adequate for a service with millions of users.
Then, when you see what the changes actually ARE you wonder why they bothered. I mean, even now the changes are:
"Track packages referenced in your email from Hotmail" - UPS / FedEx integration. Useless to me as I'm not in the US. Plus it doesn't work for the over several dozen couriers. Plus it doesn't actually do anything useful, because you're relying on a FedEx / UPS link being in the email, which is going to be - shock, horror - one or two clicks away from a package tracking page for that parcel.
"Chat with Facebook friends in Hotmail" - isn't that what Facebook is for? Why do I need to sellotape all my sites together? Can't I just have Facebook open in one tab and Hotmail in another and not have to worry about typing my email into a Facebook chat? Plus, this is actually a MESSENGER feature, not a Hotmail one. I have a Facebook account, I use it for IM, I have a Hotmail account (basically a spam-trap), I use my Messenger account for IM. Pidgin already integrates both so I don't need this feature and if I did want to use a HTTP site to view IM's, I'd use the one that's provided by the IM provider - i.e. Facebook.
"Share photos more easily with expanded coverage and new features" - - i.e. larger attachment sizes and larger total email sizes. Useful feature. But still people don't send huge files by email unless it's necessary because the RECIPIENT / TRANSIT is the problem, not the sender. Sod receiving a 10Gb email from a Hotmail user - most mailservers will just say "No thanks."
"Earlier this summer we helped people save time by viewing Hulu and YouTube videos within any email containing a link to content on those sites."
See FedEx tracking points - because if the link is in the email, why do I need Hotmail to automatically open it for me? Can't I just click it and go to Youtube?
"Organize and find important email with Subfolders" - Holy cow! Alert the press! Subfolders!
Want to get customers back? Provide a clean, small HTML inteface (ala GMail Simple Mode), provide nice basic features and not crowd my browser space with unnecessary crap while I'm trying to read my email, and stop redesigning the damn thing every ten minutes and not providing a "Classic View" option.
but then that's a lotta pig.
... "fiddling while Rome burns."