Browser-based version of Skype widens beta reach, global availability expected in weeks
Microsoft has opened up Skype for Web to more users, pulling it out of the closed beta and making it available to all current Skype users based in the United States or the United Kingdom. The widening of beta access follows after another web-based Skype change, namely a redesign of how Skype for Outlook.com appears and works for users of the browser-based webmail client.
E-mail sorting, an undo feature, in-line replies and chat options among updates
Microsoft spelled out some new features for Outlook.com today on their Office blog page about improvements to e-mail features and other connectivity. An advanced rules feature to sort e-mails and three other updates made their way to the online e-mail client ahead of Office 365 adoption.
Global launch allows Skype use within browser
Outlook.com users across the world will be able to use Skype from within their browser, Microsoft has revealed. Previously tested with a small number of users in the US and UK, the service allows all users of the e-mail service to make video calls, audio calls, and send messages to other Skype users, all from within the Outlook.com inbox.
Exchange ActiveSync issue flooded servers, system changes made
Microsoft has issued an apology for the three-day outage of Outlook.com and other online services, at the same time as explaining what caused the issue in the first place. A caching service that works with devices using Exchange ActiveSync caused the outage, with its failure and subsequent flood of traffic stopping access to Outlook, SkyDrive, and contacts list for some users.
Global outage affecting limited number of Outlook, SkyDrive users
A number of online services operated by Microsoft are not currently operating normally, according to reports. The company's Outlook, People, and the SkyDrive cloud storage service are suffering from an outage, preventing users from being able to see e-mails, make changes to contacts, nor to access their files stored online.
Skype in Outlook.com accompanied by Windows client update
Microsoft has added the ability to make Skype calls within the Outlook.com e-mail service. The site, which left beta in February, will allow Outlook users in the United Kingdom to access their Skype contacts, make calls, and communicate using instant messages, all from within the browser instead of launching external applications.
Microsoft folding Hotmail users into Outlook.com service
After its debut in beta form in last July, Microsoft has officially launched Outlook.com as its new flagship email service. At the same time, the Redmond-based software giant also revealed that since it was first unveiled, the service has grown from zero to over 60 million users in the past six months. Beginning today, Microsoft says that Hotmail users will be automatically upgraded to the new Outlook.com service, while still being able to retain their original Hotmail.com email address.
New look sports Metro influence
Microsoft has rolled out a preview version of its new email service. Dubbed Outlook.com, the service will eventually replace Hotmail, which Microsoft acquired in 1997 for $400 million. The redesigned mail interface sports a minimalist aesthetic that is somewhat reminiscent of Windows 8's Metro interface and is intended to improve legibility.