Hotmail On Your Mobile Phone - Learn How To

Over the last month or so I have been asked to help out a couple of times where people have been having problems reading Hotmail on their mobile phone. The first thing I'd suggest is that if this is at all business related then you just shouldn't be using Hotmail. It only costs $5 a month to host your own e-mail domain (whether you want a website or not). In saying that it is easily possible to get access to your Hotmail on your mobile phone, a lot of the time the problem appears to relate to people not actually using the technology to its full potential OR adding more steps than are necessary.

It is actually very easy to read your Hotmail on your mobile for free (other than your normal mobile charges), all you need is GetMail, a Hotmail account, a standard POP3 mail account and a compatible mobile phone. The steps you will need to follow are as follows

  1. Install GetMail For Hotmail (or even better Easy Email Forwarding)
  2. Configure GetMail to forward from your Hotmail account to your standard POP3 account(s) (with GetMail you can specify more than one recipient mail address using a semi-colon to separate them, I would forward on to my main mail account first and then my account to be used with my mobile phone secondly)
  3. Configure the POP settings on your mobile phone to retrieve mail from the account your Hotmail mail was forwarded to. Most mobiles these days have the ability to read e-mail via a POP server (mine is over 3 years old and works fine). Obviously there are hundreds of different mobile phones and mail providers out there and it is well beyond the scope of this article to detail configuration but it is usually straight forward (just remember to delete mail from the server, after all a copy of the forwarded mail will be in your main account?!)

That is really all there is to it, just remember that mail on your phone doesn't have to mean SMS! People start to have problems when they start using services that convert mail to SMS which is of course limited to the number characters it can display often resulting in very little useful information being retrieved from the actual e-mail.

UPDATE - Remember that Hotmail have now made a POP3 server available, however depending on your model of mobile phone this may not help you much. The Hotmail POP3 server requires SSL (or more exactly TSL) encryption that some mobile devices do not support. By using the above method to forward your Hotmail mail to a standard (none SSL) POP3 account it enables support for many more mobile phones. If you're considering doing this for your business email address then you can host your own mail domain (e.g. for less than $5 a month. I've never come across a mail account hosted in this way that wasn't easily accessibly via mobile phones!