The outlook for Microsoft's Premium mail service? Deleted

While Microsoft is bringing a few features from Outlook.com Premium to Office 365 subscribers, apparently Microsoft's Outlook.com Premium service for its email program will not be accepting any new paid users, according to internal support documents.

Support documents for Office 365 show off the Premium features being brought over from Outlook.com, but also reveal the fate of the web-based subscription service: "The Outlook.com Premium standalone offering is now closed to new subscribers. Current subscribers can renew their subscriptions to continue receiving subscription benefits." The FAQ answer then directs people to another page for a few more details.

Existing users can continue to use the service, and even renew their subscriptions. As long as the subscription is renewed, users with custom domains will be able to keep those and have it renewed automatically each year. However, if you want to transfer that domain to another provider, Microsoft is still examining its options.

“We’re working on a solution that will enable you to transfer your domain to other providers,” the support page said. “For now you should continue to renew your Outlook.com Premium subscription to retain control of your domain and to continue using your personalized email address.”

For those unfamiliar with the service, this is what was offered:

  • Five personalized email addresses with a custom domain for up to five users, which is bought from GoDaddy for an extra $10 per year, but free for the first year. Also, if the user already owns a custom domain, it can be used with the service at no extra charge.
  • Easy sharing of calendar, contacts and documents powered by the new Outlook.com platform and by OneDrive for those users sharing the custom domain.
  • Ad-free inbox when accessing those e-mail addresses via Outlook.com on the web.

Microsoft obviously is trying to get more users to migrate to Office 365 Home and Personal versions, which offer most of the Outlook.com Premium features, except for the personalized email address. As long as you sign up with an @outlook.com, @hotmail.com, @live.com, and @msn.com email address, you will get access to the other perks. But Microsoft warns that these are rolling out this month to existing Home and Personal subscribers, so the benefits may not be available for a few weeks.

Outlook.com's Premium service was first unveiled in a public preview late last year, then was officially rolled out to all users in February.

Source: Thurrott

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