Microsoft Lures Gmail Users With Outlook.com Import Tool

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Now, as a part of an effort to lure more users to its platform, Microsoft introduced a tool that easily imports your Gmail account to Outlook.com, previously known as Hotmail.

In an official Microsoft blog post, the company outlined a few steps to connect Gmail accounts (using OAuth) to Outlook.com accounts. First, you will need to sign up for an Outlook.com account (if you don’t already have one).

“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.”

 

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It’s also possible to forward Gmail email to your Outlook.com account (see image below). For a full look at the steps — and to start the importing process — click here.

 

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Microsoft emphasized in the announcement a “discontent with Gmail seems to be on the rise.” It cited a recent survey conducted by market research firm Ipsos that found nearly 1 in 4 consumers would switch email providers if it was easier to do. Study respondents said seeings ads don’t interfere with checking email (70%) was very important to the overall experience, followed by advanced spam filters (69%) and an easy-to-understand user interface (67%).

Of course, Microsoft says Outlook.com has all of these things, so switching to the platform is “a natural choice.”

The tool comes as Yahoo Mail suffered a massive outage that left some users without email access for days. Microsoft would be wise to open up the important tool to those users too.

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