Telstra today announced that it is switching its email infrastructure for customers to using Microsoft's Windows Live email service. That change affects 4.2 million inboxes, but for most people, it won't make a massive difference. Here's what you need to know.
Firstly, the process is going to take a while. Telstra officials say the switch will happen "during 2012". New customers will go straight onto the Windows Live system; other customers will be sent a mail when the switchover happens to their account.
Secondly, it's worth emphasising out that customer email addresses won't change; you'll still have a @bigpond.com or @telstra.com address, and won't be moved to an @hotmail.com or @live.com address. If you're using a standalone mail client (such as Outlook or Mail.app), the ingoing and outgoing mail settings remain largely the same. The most obvious settings change will be if you currently have a password that is less than eight characters long, since Windows Live enforces that as a requirement. Mobile phones also have slightly different settings, all listed on the Telstra site.
While Hotmail (which is what Windows Live Mail is built on) has a reputation as the email service no-one uses, it actually stacked up pretty well when we compared it to Gmail. Certainly if you've been using Telstra's web-based client, the new version will be a big improvement. And don't panic — despite the name of the service, it will work with any browser or computer, not just Windows systems.
au, bigpond, telstra, email, microsoft