Microsoft launches fresh attack on Gmail with easy-switch tool for Outlook.com

12 Dec 2013

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Microsoft has launched a new service that makes it easier for users to import their Gmail accounts to Outlook.com. Both services count hundreds of millions of users, but users stumble on tricky POP and IMAP settings.

Microsoft has introduced new functionality into Outlook.com that does the heavy lifting of moving accounts on the user’s behalf.

The new service will be rolling out to all Outlook.com users in the coming weeks.

“All you need to do is follow a few simple steps to connect your Gmail account (using OAuth) to your Outlook.com account. This will import your Gmail emails into your Outlook.com inbox and, because you’ve connected both accounts, your Google contacts will automatically appear in Outlook.com,” Microsoft said.

“The structure of your inbox, including read/unread status of your emails, will be preserved. The new tool will even set up your Gmail address as a ‘send-only’ account so you can continue to send email from your @gmail.com address, right from Outlook.com, if you still want to.”

And as if Microsoft hasn’t discomfited Google enough with this new service, it cited Ipsos research that suggests dissatisfaction with Gmail is on the rise and that consumers would switch email provider if it was easier to do.

The study also highlighted the areas that users identified as most important; these include ensuring ads don’t interfere with the email experience (70pc), offering advanced spam filters (69pc), providing an easy-to-understand user interface (67pc), and not scanning the contents of email to serve ads (58pc).

Touché. They must be seething over at Mountain View.

Email image via Shutterstock

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Editor John Kennedy is an award-winning technology journalist.

editorial@siliconrepublic.com