Microsoft rolls out desktop notifications for Hotmail

Microsoft has been working hard to make Hotmail the best web based email tool on the market. On that note, Microsoft just introduced desktop notifications when you pin Hotmail to your taskbar.

The new feature helps to bring Hotmail one stop closer to that of Outlook. Many consumers are familiar with Outlook at their workplace and aligning Outlook to Hotmail may attract more users to the service.

To activate the desktop notification feature, you need to follow these steps as directed by the Windows Team Blog:

To do this, sign in to Hotmail in IE9 and go to your Inbox. Now, drag the Hotmail tab from the address bar in IE down to the taskbar, and drop it there. Once you’ve pinned Hotmail, you can check your email just by clicking the icon – no need to open IE and navigate to a bookmark. Hotmail also uses IE 9’s new jump list feature to let you compose a new email or go straight to your Calendar or Contacts just by right-clicking on the Hotmail icon in the taskbar.

The image at the top of this article shows what the notifications look like. This small, but useful update, is one way that Microsoft is working to differentiate its Hotmail service from others on the market. The service is currently being rolled out to all users today.  

Image Credit: Windows Team Blog

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This new feature seems like a really good idea on Hotmail's end. Adding this update may make people question on which to use: Hotmail or Microsoft Outlook. This new feature will help Hotmail stand out from its competitors so do you think this it will increase users for Hotmail? http://bit.ly/oK59XP

I can honestly say I have three accounts on live and two on Gmail account.

My Live account consists of:

1) An email address dedicated for purchases (Amazon, eBay, NewEgg, etc.)
2) An email address dedicated for Social networks (Twitter, Facebook, Foursquare, Flicker, etc.). I also use this one for signups to sites like neowin or gizmodo.
3) An email address dedicated for friends. My group of friends will send out emails and before you know it, an email will turn into a 15 page thread of silly comments.

My Gmail account consists of:

1) A professional account reserved for my resume. After all if you are in the tech industry, your email address reflects a lot on who you are.(http://articles.cnn.com/2010-1...mail-service-aol?_s=PM:TECH)
2) Personal account for signups to developer sites (XDA and Android Market) and reservations to conference sites like Meetup.com.

Both my Gmail accounts are linked on my phone. These are the things I want to be alerted on. The rest I'll check much later (like once or twice a week).

fraking noobs everywhere here. Like gmail would be where it is now if it wasn't for microsoft exchange. by the way, gmail still the suckiest thing when it comes to iOS emailing, can't sync contacts, cant sync calendar... can only send emails, so old school. I was gonna sync it with my iPad but I realized why in the hell I would do that when I can sync all that crap with just one hotmail address and my password.

I am sure at one time gmail was awesome with that large storage capacity but now that doesn't cut it anymore. Office online kicks google docs ass in so many ways there is no need to mention how. Calendars are close but since the one from gmail doesnt sync with my ipad and hotmail does. Contacts the same as calendar syncing. Skydrive, much better overall solution than Google counterparts.

And lets not forget that gmail notifier. just because it was released before it doesn't make it better. Hotmail counterpart here is much better by working natively in the OS and I don't have to deal with that stupid pop up everytime I get a new email. IMO hotmail's solution its much simpler, smarter, and less anoying than gmail notifier.

I think Brad brought this up again(??) because there is nothing he can tell about win8 LOL.
btw, just a rumor, IE10 beta in BUILD.

Its interesting how it seems to even update when its not even open... Would be good if FB and Twitter integrated like this.... (Twitter with the notifications and FB with the even when closed)

Stingray said,
Too bad Hotmail is crap and I don´t use it anymore.

Too bad you can't list one reason why hotmail is crap but I can list a whole lot of reasons why you are a troll...

trashoner said,

Too bad you can't list one reason why hotmail is crap but I can list a whole lot of reasons why you are a troll...

Hey, I've got the 1990s on the phone they say they want their crappy webmail service back and for you to upgrade to Gmail. Most other people have.

Maybe I'm a total noob here but is there a way to have Outlook 2010 notify you of new mail like this without actually having Outlook open all the time? I'm connecting to an Exchange server.

Enron said,
Maybe I'm a total noob here but is there a way to have Outlook 2010 notify you of new mail like this without actually having Outlook open all the time? I'm connecting to an Exchange server.

never heard of such an option…

Nope, outlook must be open/running.. Would be handy if the Web Outlook did interact with the tack bar tho to offer a similar option/solution...

Julius Caro said,
Like other's have mentioned... this has worked like this for months. Even the source link is from march

Do you have to keep IE/Hotmail Pin open in order to get the notifications to work? That's the only way I seem to get them unline what the image shows...

There too late to make Hotmail a success again, they were last to bring desktop client support and now this.... Google and others have overtaken, I used to love my Hotmail account but that was 12 years ago

Too bad you can only set the Windows 7 taskbar to either 16 or 32 pixels making the badge pretty much unreadably on my screen.

.Neo said,
Too bad you can only set the Windows 7 taskbar to either 16 or 32 pixels making the badge pretty much unreadably on my screen.

It is a bit hard to read. Maybe instead of a mail counter it should just tell you if there's new mail or not.

.Neo said,
Too bad you can only set the Windows 7 taskbar to either 16 or 32 pixels making the badge pretty much unreadably on my screen.

*40 or 25 pixels

Meh this is 10 years too late if you ask me. Hotmail to me has become irrelevant for some time but I still keep it around for junk sites that require email. I don't even think people use msn anymore?

S7R1K3R said,
Meh this is 10 years too late if you ask me. Hotmail to me has become irrelevant for some time but I still keep it around for junk sites that require email. I don't even think people use msn anymore?

My Gmail logs into it to check mail now and then for me. Does that count?

S7R1K3R said,
Meh this is 10 years too late if you ask me. Hotmail to me has become irrelevant for some time but I still keep it around for junk sites that require email. I don't even think people use msn anymore?

I actually use Hotmail as my primary address and Gmail as my junk address. So, to each his own.

S7R1K3R said,
Meh this is 10 years too late if you ask me. Hotmail to me has become irrelevant for some time but I still keep it around for junk sites that require email. I don't even think people use msn anymore?

I hope you're joking. Why are there so many delusional e-mail (or Gmail) fanboys out there? If you don't find Hotmail services relevant to you, whether you've updatedc yourself on their offerings or not, then good for you.

I find it ridiculous that the only purpose some Gmail people keep Hotmail is for just junk. It's quite ironic, because they're the ones that complain Hotmail has always let junk mail or spam seep into the inbox.

Oh, and there are many, many active people using Windows Live Messenger. Yeah, many people these days use Facebook for chat, but it's very unreliable at times, and it's easier managing it separate from a browser page on 'MSN'. Plus you get more features with Messenger or Skype.

MIne wasn't working till now.... now HOW ABOUT RAISING THAT 1,000 contact limit so I don't have to have Office 365, and I can lose one of my email accounts, AND get back the ability to use a REPLY TO address? Thanks MS, I do appreciate you, but you need some payback for all those years you disrespected us. You're coming along nicely!

I've had issues with this... Seems like I don't get the notification for this and facebook unless I have a window open and minimized....

Is that supposed to be how it works? The image shows that it isn't open and they still get 9+ unread emails...

Has this article been sitting at the bottom of the 'pending approval' pile for the last five months, and just sent through today without anyone checking it?

Hey Brad, we blogged about this at the end of March. This isn't something we've recently rolled out (so it's not exactly news). But its certainly a fantastic feature when using IE9 on Windows 7 and one I absolutely love!

Indeed you did, saw it got passed around the twitterverse! Oh, well, its a nice reminder to all about the feature!


/hides

First off, Hotmail is WAY better than Gmail...the other thing is Tom's right, this feature has been available for a while. What WOULD be nice is some kind of notification for the Hotmail messenger.

Lion and Lamb Ministry said,
First off, Hotmail is WAY better than Gmail...

You lost me there. I'll still give you an ironic "like" though.

sviola said,
For Hotmail to become better than Gmail, MS has to improve their spam filter...

Why? I never got one spam mail on any of my hotmail accounts!?

rawbert said,
Hotmail, welcome to GMail Notifier. You're several years late.

Gmail Notifier wasn't a feature built into Gmail; this is a feature built into Hotmail. Your comparison is ridiculous.

Callum said,

Gmail Notifier wasn't a feature built into Gmail; this is a feature built into Hotmail. Your comparison is ridiculous.

True but google does have their own that has been available for quite some time. Check it out under google labs.

UndergroundWire said,

True but google does have their own that has been available for quite some time. Check it out under google labs.

so it is not released to the public cause its at google labs?? so therefore google is late to the party.. microsoft probably had this at "microsoft research" since before the release of windows 7

Lachlan said,

so it is not released to the public cause its at google labs?? so therefore google is late to the party.. microsoft probably had this at "microsoft research" since before the release of windows 7

Late to the party? Microsoft's recent projects is all about late to the party. Bing, WP7, Voice Navigation, MP3 players, I'm sure there is more.

I don't care about available to the public or not. If you use a product do you not check the settings of a product to use it to it's full functionality. Google Labs is available for everyone to use. No special signup needed. If you were unaware of it too bad for you.

UndergroundWire said,

Late to the party? Microsoft's recent projects is all about late to the party. Bing, WP7, Voice Navigation, MP3 players, I'm sure there is more.

I don't care about available to the public or not. If you use a product do you not check the settings of a product to use it to it's full functionality. Google Labs is available for everyone to use. No special signup needed. If you were unaware of it too bad for you.

I'd just like you to know, out of this retarded sea of Neowin commenters, your comments are the ones I relate to most.

Thanks for balancing out the tard levels. Seriously, I think most people on here can't let go of the days when MSN Messenger was cool.

SuperHans said,

I'd just like you to know, out of this retarded sea of Neowin commenters, your comments are the ones I relate to most.

Thanks for balancing out the tard levels. Seriously, I think most people on here can't let go of the days when MSN Messenger was cool.

Thank you. I appreciate that. Most people on this site need to let go go of the Microsoft ideology. I can't stand behind a product if it has failed to be innovative.

Microsoft has let me down time and time again. How many times will they re-brand their search engine? How many times will they re-brand their Mobile OS (Kind of sad really, it's like SciFi Channel being re-branded to SyFy)? How many times will they re-brand their email (@msn.com / @hotmail.com to @live.com)?

The few products Microsoft does well at are Office, Xbox and every other time Windows (lets face it, Windows Me and Vista was absolute garbage to the general public).

Tom W said,
Umm this has been available since March as per the windows team blog!

Yeah, I was wondering if I've read this before... I guess so.

From the article title I thought "cool they're bringing that feature I've been using these past few months in the taskbar to desktop icons"...Then I read the article...

Glassed Silver said,
A first glance at Windows 8 if you ask me...

GS:mac

Not really, this feature was built into Windows 7 - the part where you have specific shortcuts on your taskbar, and depending on the application, lets you do specific things, and different ways of interacting with the shortcut.. They're just taking that a step further.