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What is the difference between and

What’s the difference between and

Are you confused about and or and Are you confused about what these are and how they differ from one another? Have you tried to reach yet? You would have been redirected directly to the Outlook sign-in page if you had. This is because Hotmail was rebranded as Outlook. is essentially the same webmail service. Hotmail has been confusing users ever since Microsoft acquired it. It has repeatedly renamed the service, often to their dismay. Here’s the story of how Hotmail became Outlook.

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Hotmail was launched in 1996 as one of the first webmail services. Hotmail was designed and created using HTML (HyperText markup Language). It was typecased initially as HoTMaiL (notice all the capital letters). Hotmail allowed users to access their email from any location and freed them from ISP-based email. Within a year of its initial launch, it was very popular.


Microsoft purchased Hotmail in 1997. The two companies merged to create Microsoft’s internet services, MSN (Microsoft Network). Hotmail was then rebranded MSN Hotmail. However, Hotmail is still widely known as Hotmail. Microsoft linked it with Microsoft Passport (now Microsoft Account), and further merged the service with other services under MSN, such as MSN messenger (instant messaging), and MSN spaces.


Microsoft introduced Windows Live in 2005-2006 as a brand new name for many MSN services. Although Microsoft originally planned to rename MSN Hotmail as Windows Live Mail, beta testers preferred Hotmail. MSN Hotmail was renamed to Windows Live Hotmail, along with other MSN services. This service was designed to improve the speed and storage space, as well as provide better user experience. Hotmail was later “re-invented”, adding new features like categories, instant actions, scheduled sweep, and others.

The MSN brand shifted its focus to online content, such as news, weather, and entertainment. It was available via its web portal, while Windows Live covered all Microsoft’s online services. Older users could still access MSN Hotmail interface if they hadn’t updated to the new service.


The Windows Live brand was dropped in 2012. Some services were rebranded separately while others were integrated into Windows OS as apps or services. Although the webmail service was renamed several times, it was still known as Hotmail. However, Hotmail became Outlook after Windows Live was discontinued. Outlook is the name that Microsoft webmail service is today. is now the official webmail service you can use to access any of your Microsoft email addresses. This includes email, and While you can still access older email accounts via or or to make new accounts, they can only be made as account.

This was how Hotmail became MSN Hotmail, Windows Live Hotmail, and finally Outlook. The confusion caused by all this rebranding, renaming and redesigning by Microsoft was felt by users. Although has been renamed and, there’s still confusion. What does Outlook actually mean? When we used the term Hotmail earlier, people knew what we meant. However, after all this renaming we now see many products and services that are linked to Outlook.


Before we get into the differences between, Outlook Mail, and Outlook, let’s first discuss two completely separate things: The Web email client (or web application) and Desktop email clients. These are the two ways you can access your email.


A web email client is used whenever you log into your email account via a web browser, such as Chrome, Firefox, Internet Explorer, or Safari. You can log in to from any web browser. Accessing your email through a web client does not require any special program. You only need a device, such as a computer or laptop, and an internet connection. You will be using a web-based email client when you access your email through your mobile browser.


You could also use a desktop email client to launch a program that allows you to access your emails. This program could be on your computer, or your mobile phone (in this case, it’s a mobile email app). Your desktop email client is the program you use to access your email account.

You may be asking why we are referring to these two types email clients. This is what distinguishes from Outlook Mail or Outlook. It refers to the current Microsoft web email client. was previously known as Microsoft’s Outlook Web App (or OWA) was launched in 2015. It is now part of Office 365. It offered the following services: Outlook Mail and Outlook Calendar, Outlook People, Outlook Tasks, and Outlook Tasks. Outlook Mail, the web-based email client that you use to access your emails, is the most popular. It is available to anyone who has Office 365 access or subscribes to Exchange Server. Outlook Mail is, in other words the replacement for the Hotmail interface that you previously used. Microsoft’s desktop email client, Outlook, is sometimes called Microsoft Outlook, or Office Outlook. It has been part of Microsoft Outlook since Office 95. It includes features such as calendar, task management and contact manager. Microsoft Outlook is available on mobile phones with Android and iOS operating systems, as well as for a few Windows versions.


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That’s it. We hope that all of your confusions regarding Hotmail and Outlook have been resolved now and that you are able to see the whole picture.




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