Gmail Really Wants You to Switch Email ProvidersBy: Chris Crum - May 14, 2009
Gmail will now let you import email and contacts from other email providers like Yahoo, Hotmail, and AOL (and a bunch more. Full list at the bottom of the article). This means that if you have an old account that you’d like to merge into your Gmail account, you can do so.
It also means (and this is what Google is pushing for) that users of other services can easily start new Gmail accounts without abandoning everything they have built up with another provider. Google is making the switch more enticing.
In addition, users can have their messages forwarded from their old accounts for 30 days. This allows for time for the transition period.
All new Gmail accounts come equipped with this feature. For existing accounts, the feature is being slowly rolled out.
"You’ll know it’s on for your account when you see the Accounts and Import tab (formerly just called Accounts) under Settings," explains Gmail Engineer Chad Perry. "Sorry, businesses and schools using Google Apps won’t see these new migration options."
Email providers that you can now migrate to Gmail: