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Images: The changing face of Web mail

With Windows Live Mail currently being tested, here is a look back at how Web-based e-mail has changed since 1997.
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Microsoft acquired Hotmail in December 1997, and got 8 million users. Here is a screenshot of Hotmail as it looked then.

Credit: Microsoft

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Microsoft showed off an early test version of Kahuna at a financial analysts' meeting in July 2005.

Credit: Microsoft

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3 of 6 ZDNet Editors/ZDNet

Yahoo launched a limited U.S. beta of its improved Yahoo Mail service in September 2005. The version included features like a built-in RSS reader and the ability to tab through multiple open e-mails. It also adds many other features appearing in Windows Live Mail, such as a reading pane and drag-and-drop organisation.

Credit: Yahoo

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A look at the current version of Hotmail. Microsoft announced Windows Live in November 1995, including plans to rename Hotmail as Windows Live Mail.

Credit: CNET News.com

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5 of 6 ZDNet Editors/ZDNet

Here is a screenshot -- the April 2006 test version -- of Windows Live Mail's new look with Outlook-style reading pane and other features. Microsoft demos improved Hotmail (code-named Kahuna) at a financial analysts' conference and started publicly testing its screens.

Credit: CNET News.com

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6 of 6 ZDNet Editors/ZDNet

To address criticisms over the new Windows Live Mail, Microsoft has included in its most recent test version a "classic view" that uses new technology but looks and acts like the old Hotmail.

Credit: CNET News.com

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