MSN Hotmail Takes on Google with 250 MB of Email Storage

    June 24, 2004

In a few weeks, users of MSN Hotmail will be offered 250MB of storage space. The upgrade will take place in early July, Microsoft announced today.

See what experts at WebProWorld are saying about the competition between Yahoo! Mail, Hotmail and Gmail.

Microsoft’s announcement comes as no surprise to industry experts, who’ve been anticipating the change as Microsoft steps up to compete with Gmail, Google’s free email service with an entire Gigabyte of storage.

Increased storage isn’t all Microsoft will be offering its Hotmail users, though. Hotmail’s 170 million worldwide users can also look forward to free anti-virus protection. This would make MSN Hotmail “the only free global e-mail service to both scan and clean incoming and outgoing e-mail for viruses and worms before they can enter a customer’s inbox.” Virus scans will be automatic and won’t require any action from customers.

Additionally, customers will be provided with the option of upgrading to MSN Hotmail Plus, a new premium service. For $19.95 per year in the United States, customers will have access to 2 GB of storage and will be able to send attachments up to 20MB. Offline storage will also be availabe, and will be “limited only by the size of their computer hard drive.” The upgrade will be automatic for current MSN Hotmail Extra Storage customers.

“We know from talking with our customers that online safety is their number one concern,” said Blake Irving, corporate vice president of Communication Services and Member Platform for MSN. “MSN is intensely focused on providing a safer and more robust communications experience for consumers. Providing free anti-virus cleaning helps protect our Hotmail customers while guarding members of the overall Hotmail community and the friends and family they e-mail.”

Microsoft, which claims to “block nearly 3 billion pieces of spam a day from reaching customers’ inboxes,” continues to fight against the growing problem of unsolicited email. Hotmail allows users to set custom spam filters to prevent against what it calls “the spam epidemic.” For more information on Microsoft’s current efforts, visit

Would you pay to have 2 GB of storage? Or is Gmail’s free 1 GB enough for you?

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Brittany Thompson is an administrator for and contributes to the Insider Reports with her regular articles and interviews.