What is Hotmail?
Hotmail, also known as Windows Live Hotmail, is a popular web-based email service that provides users with the ability to send and receive emails over the internet. Launched by Sabeer Bhatia and Jack Smith in 1996, Hotmail quickly gained popularity for its free email accounts and accessible interface. In 1997, Microsoft acquired Hotmail and incorporated it into its suite of services, eventually rebranding it as Outlook.com. Despite the name change, many users and references still use the Hotmail name.
Basic Concepts of a Mail Service
Before delving into Hotmail’s features and functionalities, let’s explain some of the basic concepts of a mail service in general.
1. Email Account: An email account serves as your digital identity on the internet, allowing you to send, receive, and store messages. It consists of a unique email address (e.g., firstname.lastname@example.org) and a password that verifies your access.
2. Inbox: The inbox is the primary folder where incoming emails are stored. It displays a list of received messages, typically sorted by the most recent. Users can open, read, reply to, delete, or organize emails within their inbox.
3. Composing and Sending Emails: To send an email, you compose a message by entering the recipient’s email address, subject, and the content of your message. You can also attach files, images, or documents to your email, allowing you to share various types of content.
4. Sent Items: Sent Items is a folder that automatically keeps a copy of all sent emails. It serves as a record of the messages you have sent.
5. Drafts: Drafts are unsent or partially composed email messages that are saved for further editing or later sending. This feature allows users to work on an email over time without losing their progress.
6. Spam/Junk Mail: Spam or junk mail refers to unsolicited email messages that are often promotional, irrelevant, or potentially harmful. Email services have built-in spam filters to identify and divert such messages to a separate spam folder for users to review and delete.
7. Attachments: Attachments are files or documents that can be sent along with an email. They can include images, videos, presentations, spreadsheets, or other digital files.
While these concepts are not specific to Hotmail, understanding them will help you navigate and effectively utilize any email service, including Hotmail. In the next sections, we will explore the specific features and benefits of Hotmail.