CNET First Look
Outlook.com e-mailMicrosoft's new Outlook.com e-mail brings a starkly beautiful design, a user-friendly interface, and a wealth of new features. CNET's Kent German gives you a guided tour in our First look video.
I am Kent German and senior managing editor at CNET and today we're taking a first look at outlook dot com. -- dot com isn't Microsoft's new browser based email service it is free of course and is eventually gonna replace Hotmail. Right now it's only available -- preview anybody can download it you can use it on any machine. You'll see it even on it has a lot of windows eight touches. Some of fonts that people hub you don't need windows eight to use it high you can move over to -- if -- existing Hotmail user you can jump on it if you're new. I if you don't like it right away you can move back but eventually Microsoft will move all Hotmail users to this system so. Keep that in mind it's very minimalist design really clean not a lot of clutter and -- It's gonna look a lot like Gmail in some ways but I think it's even more minimalist and that. When you open it up you'll see into the inbox is pretty much what you'd expect many email service you'll see a list of messages down the front. Course you'll see than usual fields of the senders name the subject line and then you'll see at the time and date sent. In the sentinel last 24 hours to see the time and of the sent out earlier than that you'll see the date of on the top is the commands -- You can actually go over and change it to -- for a few different colors but that bit of colors really the only bit of personalization here and I still think that's fine because it just -- you know. In box just what you need to now its surface directly you can at a preview pane in outlook dot com so to do that you just go over to the side here click on the -- will. And and a preview pane so of course what that lets you do is that lets you preview as you go -- -- -- a box that lets you preview. Other -- up all the content that's in there. I did like using the preview box for a couple reasons one is that when you're using the preview pane you actually get independent scroll bars for Indian box. -- can scroll down and see all your messages. And for this left power failure folders but you don't have the preview pane on you just get one scroll bar here on the sides have at it like that. Also you'll notice of their apps over here. Now these are pretty unobtrusive pop on you'll see -- -- you -- picture pops up. Microsoft says it's not reading your -- for the ads I don't exactly know. How it decides what ads you get I saw everything from its -- as SATA six jelly jars to Brazilian steakhouse that some random secret place so. It was a really random assortment. In -- that does say that when you open a message. So when you open -- -- friendly apps will disappear. And I found that to be the case but only when I was using this preview bar so if I -- to message that actually -- -- myself and clicked on it you'll see -- the ads disappear. But cycle back. And I move that preview pane. And I click on the same -- -- They need to see ads appear sides have not really sure why that's happening to check what matters now outlook dot com does have a people partner and that's to be straight out of Windows -- -- -- a -- saint. To get to it you just go to this. Aero panacea mail calendar you can sky drive actually this. In the sky -- to -- a lot of storage thanks to that. And yet of people hub for finding all your contacts. You can integrate FaceBook Twitter and other social media services without their content so when that happens few things. So if I get a message from somebody that I'm hooked into FaceBook so -- go to this message from Jessica don't court. You'll see that her photo for -- but pops right out so I didn't have to insert that manually. And you'll see her latest tweet and FaceBook status updates you can also tweet directly to her from here. He could send -- FaceBook message directly he could writer Walter accolades so. It does break all those elements together course you don't have to integrate FaceBook or anything like that you can keep them all separate. But another advantage to do that is you can actually chat with the person as well so just -- line. I couldn't hear. And that -- so it just brings a nice way to do all those things in one area. Nonetheless I -- say you have a list of folders so that's pretty standard -- that -- most email services now below that though. Is a quick -- section now this is something that's unique to my outlook dot com what it does is -- there's certain number of categories the you can put you can organize your email into. -- they were a couple different ways they are -- categories for shipping updates photos and documents and also flagged. What happens this is -- an -- comes in that it would outlook -- com recognized hazardous photos attached or as a shipping updates select a tracking number from UPS. It will put them there automatically. Now this isn't like a folder it doesn't move them there are so they removed they leave the inbox they actually stay in there about inbox they just have to sort of category -- them. So if I click on photos for instance I -- see all the emails that came -- a photo. Same if I go to documents and -- if I -- to shipping updates. The shipping updates is nice because I'm not sure how that it works exactly but I can go and I can see here. -- -- -- -- -- Pathetic status -- so everything is just organize there. Now folders are -- assessment sounds. Folders are where you move things to David -- and boxes to -- -- -- -- so -- can click -- -- folder -- -- -- -- messages here. And then show only this message that -- -- -- so. -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- And me click comment you're seeking -- an -- slight chassis can scroll through them the photos are big it was a nice player. Course you -- dominant -- -- group you can download them individually or you can send them on somebody else. And a message comes from YouTube and you include -- YouTube link. Here's CO Panetta and the video actually be in a box you can just play it ratepayers -- Do good job but that the couple blessings and accepted at -- -- looked out comments when you're scrolling over an email. You can see get these quick action so -- -- -- quick action icons they only appear when you're -- -- when you mouse and every you know. They allow you to try to market -- -- trashes or flagging it. So those are nice because that -- a couple steps from going up to a -- going to are here and trying to find pull down menu. You can. -- DC can do a couple other select markets John core. You can do send to folder or something like that. -- you flag a message a -- message to automatically appear at the top of the inbox so no matter where and it matters it was -- two weeks ago or just it just now. It will look Carrot -- so that's nice cause it -- brings us messages right to the top. You can choose to hide it if you like. But I do think that's a nice touch. As -- noticed this this commands bar will change as you're doing different things -- when you're just in the inbox it's only gonna show the relevant commands. And then when you're in an individual message you'll see all the things you need to do like -- -- or anything like that. Microsoft has promised couple spam filtering features -- tries to make a designation between obvious spam so. Things like image here in you won a lottery thing. Or. But it -- grainy hologram gallery newsletters their daily deals -- add specials you get when you are patronize retailers and it starts it needs something every day. Some of those things and they want some of the things you down some marks -- does allow you to do what's called -- schedule clean up function so if you go to sweep you click on there. You -- on a schedule cleanup. And then you can do things like -- all the messages from a sender you can delete them -- messages older than ten days you can designate. The messages he wants -- message that you don't. Microsoft does say that if you try to if you want to block an email. It will make an attempt to block all future emails from a sender. And attempt on unsubscribe you -- -- a question about that is if it makes an attempt to unsubscribe you from an obvious -- Does that -- and tell -- amity agreement exists -- anymore. And you have to wait and see have only been using this for a few days so I can't really gauge its spam effectiveness and had few messages and it was a brand new account for me so. -- over time exactly how it works but it's nice to see a spam promises you know spam makes everybody we are -- -- hopefully Microsoft. That's outlook dot com. I like it in its first stages I think -- -- has a nice clean interface is very easy to understand there are some nice features I like that for you I like just an instant. Just -- When you can just hear when your mouse number and your payments and I like all of FaceBook integration and -- an Amazon can give everybody. Providing if you have a real digital life and everything is upgrading its gonna be a great step. You can't get now what are coming up starting towels near you -- we'll be so itself past. -- about dot com and then moving forward how many users got to get -- I'm Ken Sherman and this Microsoft Outlook dark.