Microsoft has announced that after many months of plotting to kill off the Hotmail name in favour of Windows Live Mail , it has had a change of heart. The company has decided to revive the Hotmail name by combining it with its Windows Live brand to create Windows Live Hotmail.

It basically means that while Microsoft will maintain its target to rebrand all former-MSN services under the Windows Live umbrella, users can still refer to their addresses as 'Hotmail accounts'.

Senior product manager Richard Sim said, "When we launch the mail service worldwide, it will be named Windows Live Hotmail. That's right! And for starters, some of you will begin to see the Windows Live Hotmail brand show up in the beta - first in our Microsoft internal version (dogfood) and eventually in the public version in the coming weeks.

"By adopting the name 'Windows Live Hotmail', we believe we're bringing together the best of both worlds - new and old. We're able to offer the great new technology that Windows Live has to offer, while also bringing the emotional connection many existing and loyal users have with Hotmail."

Sim made the announcement on his Windows Live Spaces blog , and the announcement has had mixed reaction from Hotmail users. The comments section on the entry so far has 63 entries, mostly from disgruntled Hotmail users.

Some say Microsoft should ditch the Hotmail name for good and just go with the original plan to take Windows Live Mail out of beta and into a full launch. Others think the email service should retain its original Hotmail name.

One thing is clear; 'Windows Live Hotmail' doesn't exactly roll off the tongue...