Outlook.com Premium is now available as a public preview

US-only for the time being though

We've been hearing talk of a premium version of Microsoft's revamped Outlook.com for a while now, but until this point the extra bells and whistles have only been available to a select few via private invitations. Now it looks like Microsoft is ready to roll it out to more people.

Well, more people in the United States, anyway. A public preview page just appeared where you can give the service a go for $19.95 a year (about £16 or AU$26). The regular price will be $49.95 per annum (£40/AU$65).

As ZDNet notes, this is very much a preview, so proceed with caution - not all planned features will be live and you might come across a few bugs along the way.

Names and addresses

So what do you get for your cold, hard cash? Well, an ad-free Outlook.com experience on the web for starters, plus five custom email addresses (e.g. dave@nieldfamily.com) which are free for the first year.

Calendars, contacts and files are automatically shared between these five email addresses too, making it ideal for keeping everyone in your family or small business in the same loop.

There are plenty of details yet to be cleared up by Microsoft - such as whether or not Office 365 subscribers can get involved with Outlook.com Premium for free - but if you want to give it an early spin and you live in the US, then the option's there.