Wednesday, September 21, 2005

The big Kahuna is coming!

Over the years, I have been a dedicated user of Microsoft Hotmail. I think the product is great, but it is in need of a major update. Microsoft is completely in line with my assessment and is currently working on the next version, codenamed “Kahuna." The product is focused on three areas: Safer, Simpler and Faster. Let’s take a quick look at the some of the promises:


  • A more powerful spam filter
  • Detects phishing! (not fishing for a team--see earlier post)
  • Detects unwanted "mailing list" e-mails and automatically sends unsubscribe messages.
  • Child e-mail protection--a parent can specify from whom the child can get mail (this feature is not currently in the beta, but it will be there in the final release).


  • The UI has auto complete populated from your contacts
  • Right click to get a menu to mark messages
  • Full search on the server with the result stored in a folder (like GMail)
  • Drag and drop functionality
  • Dr. Watson reports sent to Microsoft. (not sure that this belongs under simpler--in my opinion, there should never be a Dr. Watson...but that's another post)
  • Reading pane, like Outlook.
  • Reduction in the number of steps to do things
  • Downloading attachments is easier (plus thumbnails of the attachments, to speed the process)


  • A new “Bootstrap” function makes the whole experience faster by downloading things on to your laptop as soon as you hit the site. The current Hotmail environment is a post back application and this very different concept, providing a hybrid approach (chunky client).
  • Uploading happens in the background
  • Save every sent mail automatically


  • API
  • Offline storage
  • RSS capabilities
  • Persistent search


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