Redmond rings the changes Microsoft has announced the official launch of Outlook.com, the successor to its Hotmail service that is being phased out but don't worry if you want to cling on the past, they're not going to make Hotmail users change email addresses and passwords. Not just yet, anyhow. Since the release of Outlook.com last summer as a preview, 60 million users have signed up, making it the world's fastest growing email service. Through the preview, Microsoft has heard about customers' favourite features, the way they use the product, and how well Outlook.com is delivering on the company's vision for modern email. For example, Outlook.com lets customers connect to popular social networks such as Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter. Outlook.com is also designed to make it easy to send hundreds of photos and videos in a single message all powered by SkyDrive. After only six months, nearly half of all people using Outlook.com have already used SkyDrive to share more than half a billion photos and Office documents. Starting today, Microsoft will begin to upgrade every Hotmail user to Outlook.com. The upgrade ishould be seamless and instant for Hotmail customers; everything from their @hotmail.com email address, password, contacts, etc. will stay the same. So Hotmail customers will get all the benefits from the redesigned Outlook.com experience: a new user interface, lots of new features, and better performance.