Outlook.com to Stop Supporting Multiple Email Accounts, Wants You to Use Aliases Instead

In this episode of "Microsoft Knows Best," Outlook.com is phasing out support for multiple email addresses. Going back to the Hotmail days, linked accounts were introduced in 2006, and Microsoft fully acknowledges there are several legitimate reasons for using multiple email addresses, such as not wanting to hand out your primary email identity to businesses that may then flood it with junk mail or sell it to third-parties. So, what gives?

"Well, a lot of things have changed since we introduced linked accounts. Most importantly, your email address is also often how you sign into the account that is your 'digital identity.' For example, your Microsoft account unlocks a broad array of experiences ranging from Windows to Xbox to Office365 to Outlook.com and more," Microsoft explained in a blog post. "Increasingly, devices allow people to connect their various accounts (Microsoft account, Facebook, Twitter, Apple ID, etc.) to their devices and have it all 'just work.'

"That means that you want to have one Microsoft account that lets you light up your Microsoft devices and services with your stuff: your gamer score, your email inboxes, your calendars, your people, and your files, as well as to connect to all the networks you care about."

Outlook Alias

Towards that end, Microsoft is designing aliases to take the place of multiple email addresses. According to Microsoft, it's a more secure and convenient way of doing things. Whereas users are more apt to pay less attention to the security settings on their secondary email account, Microsoft points out that aliases are tied to a single Microsoft account that has your latest and most up-to-date security info.

Microsoft will begin unlinking accounts in July,