Hotmail is the latest contender to offer large amounts of storage to its subscribers – up to 2 gigabytes if you pay a US$19.95 (€16.46) subscription. Users of the free Hotmail service will get 250mb, as a response to GMail’s 1 gig, advertising-funded, service.
By GMail’s standards, 250mb seems almost mean, but then Hotmail aren’t going after the “never delete anything” crowd. The new 2 gig incarnation of Hotmail will be called Hotmail Plus, and will allow users to send attachments of up to 20mb – and will have no graphical adverts on the web frontend.
As a bonus, all 170 million subscribers will get email anti-virus checking and MSN Calendar. It’s about time that the anti-virus product was integrated as that’ll cut down on much of the infected spam that is flooding mailboxes worldwide. A frightening release from BT yesterday stated “46% of all email traffic in Europe will be spam in 2004 and by 2008 this will rise to 71%.”
Interestingly, a Neilsen report in May had the number of Hotmail subscribers down at around 34 million.