Microsoft has decided to play a little catch up to Google’s Gmail/.Mac/Mobile Me with a new addition to its Hotmail email service. Back in November, Hotmail added the ability to use any existing email address. Now Microsoft has extended that service to include the ability to create and manage multiple email aliases from a single account.
Why would you want to create an email alias? The first obvious answer is that it’s an easy email address to get rid of if you have someone you don’t want to communicate with anymore, or if you have found the email address to become a magnet for spam. Hotmail and Gmail both have given users the ability to add just a plus sign to their email address like [email protected] to help manage different kinds of email. Of course, the plus sign did very little to hide your primary email address since it would be easy to figure out a person’s actual address.
The newest Hotmail feature allows the creation of a completely different email address or alias which can be delivered to your primary mailbox, but also turned off when you no longer have need for it. Hotmail will allow users to add up to five email aliases per year up to fifteen aliases total. In comparison, Google’s Gmail only allows you to add email aliases by creating a new Gmail account and using the Send As feature to have email delivered to your primary mailbox.
Read more at the Windows Live Blog