Hotmail upgrade saga continues: rollout nearly complete; problems remain

HotmailLogoEvolutionWindows Live Hotmail is in the process of completing the rollout to Wave 3 “by the end of this week”, according to a blog post on Windows Live Wire.  The post acknowledges the flood of comments that have surrounded the upgrade, and notes that the service has been changed because of them, saying “we have read and analyzed several thousand comments, fixed several bugs, and released five updates to the code”.

The post goes on to answer some frequently asked questions (can I go back to the old version?: no), and to tease some upcoming changes, including “some cool ideas about how to use the space where the favorites list used to be.  We’ll keep listening to your feedback on this one”.

While most of the comments on the Windows Live Wire blog, and the Your Mail is Here, Come and Get It blog, are negative about the changes, many of the comments here on our original post on the reaction to the upgrade were much more positive about the new Hotmail.  Indeed, in tracking comments on a Twitter Search for “Hotmail”, there seem to be at least as many positive as negative comments.  Twitterers did point out Hotmail’s problems with Linux, which apparently can be traced to a user-agent string issue, and there were a number of reports of slow load times, and even jumping back and forth between the new and the old versions.  We seem to notice a slightly longer initial load time, with then significantly faster switching between pages once Hotmail has opened.  We would expect that the switch itself is causing at least some of the delay, and for at least some of the issues to iron themselves out over the next few days as the service stabilizes, but we’ll see.

How is the new Hotmail working for you?  Is it faster? slower?  Do you like the new interface?  Is everything working?  Leave us a comment on your Hotmail experience…