Microsoft and GoDaddy have teamed up to take on Google’s Gmail for Work with a new take on the classic Outlook webmail service. The new Premium (with a capital P) version of Outlook.com will allow users to employ custom domains for up to five email addresses, and offers a handful of other features for around $50 a year — and just $20 for the first year.
MS Power User reports that the Outlook.com Premium preview was invite-only until Tuesday.You can now sign up to test out the new service, provided you cough up for a yearly subscription. There’s a catch, though. Microsoft’s partnership with GoDaddy creates a bit of a snag for subscribers about a year down the line.
To use a custom domain for your email address, Outlook.com needs to register that domain, and in this case Microsoft partnered with GoDaddy, which will provide the domain registration. Microsoft even covers the first annual registration fee, but after that, you’ll need to pay both Microsoft and GoDaddy separately once your first annual subscription is up.
It’s not a huge deal, and certainly not unusual, but by combining the two services for the initial year but not for subsequent years, Outlook is setting itself up for some confusion down the road. To be fair, if you use Google for Work for a custom domain email address, you’d need to bring your own domain name, which you pay for separately.
The only difference is the initial entanglement between Microsoft and GoDaddy, so if you’re looking to try Outlook.com’s new Premium service, it would be a good idea to just register your domain on your own first to avoid any potential confusion down the road.
Outlook.com Premium also features a robust system for sharing contacts and calendars between custom email addresses, and a new set of security protocols according to the press release.
If you want to give it a try, and you’re in the United States, you can check it out here.