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Q: A brief history of Email ( Answered 5 out of 5 stars,   1 Comment )
Subject: A brief history of Email
Category: Computers > Internet
Asked by: jallen62-ga
List Price: $40.00
Posted: 10 Jun 2005 09:15 PDT
Expires: 10 Jul 2005 09:15 PDT
Question ID: 531868
I need to know milestones and dates for Email. In addition, I need
user adoption rates from conception through current day. I do not nned
a ton of data here. Just major milestones (first email sent, first web
based email service, etc.) and number of users at those points.
Subject: Re: A brief history of Email
Answered By: bobbie7-ga on 10 Jun 2005 12:19 PDT
Rated:5 out of 5 stars
Hello again Joel,

Below you will find the results of my research regarding the history of Email.


?Despite common belief, e-mail actually predates the Internet; in
fact, existing e-mail systems were a crucial tool in creating the

E-mail started in 1965 as a way for multiple users of a time-sharing
mainframe computer to communicate. Although the exact history is
murky, among the first systems to have such a facility were SDC's Q32
and MIT's CTSS.

E-mail was quickly extended to become network e-mail, allowing users
to pass messages between different computers.

Ray Tomlinson initiated the use of the @ sign to separate the names of
the user and their machine in 1971 The common report that he
"invented" e-mail is an exaggeration, although his early e-mail
programs SNDMSG and READMAIL were very important. The first message
sent by Ray Tomlinson was likely a test message consisting of the
first row of letters on the keyboard.?



Ray Tomlinson says he invented email. These first messages were sent in late 1971.


Computer engineer, Ray Tomlinson invented internet based email in late 1971.


The first "real" email was sent in late 1971,




Sabeer Bhatia started the first  Web-based free e-mail service called
Hotmail in 1996.?

Hotmail was founded by Jack Smith and Sabeer Bhatia in 1995, and was
commercially launched on July 4, 1996, Independence Day in the U.S.,
symbolically representing freedom from ISPs.

Hotmail became very popular, and was later bought by Microsoft and
re-branded MSN Hotmail.?

?Sabeer Bhatia and Jack Smith founded Hotmail in 1996, one of the
Internet's first Web-based e-mail service providers on $300,000 then
sold to Microsoft for an estimated $400 million.?

?In 1997, Jack Smith and Sabeer Bhatia sold Hotmail to Microsoft for
$400 million. Before Smith and Bhatia got rid of Hotmail, the web
based email service had 9 million subscribers. By May 2001, MSN
Hotmail grew to 100 million subscribers. According to Microsoft, "The
MSN Hotmail user base has grown more than 10 times since January 1998,
more than the world population has grown in the last fifty years."

In its first 1.5 years, Hotmail signed up over 12 million subscribers.


Dec. 31, 1997: Hotmail has 8 million users

April 2000: MSN Hotmail 67 million active users. 

May 14, 2001: MSN Hotmail has 100 million active worldwide

Sept. 18, 2002: 110 million users of MSN Hotmail worldwide

Dec. 3, 2003: 145 million customers worldwide visiting MSN Hotmail
Source: Microsoft


?Electronic mail was introduced in 1972.

In 1994, initial commerce web sites were established and mass email
marketing campaigns were launched, introducing the word "spamming" to
the Internet vocabulary.

In 1998, Internet users sent over 6 billion email messages. 

By the end of 2000, over 891 million electronic mailboxes were in
existence, a 67% increase from 1999.

In 2001, it is estimated that half the U.S. population will email 500
million times a day, with each sender averaging 45 messages a day.?

Source: Wisconsin State Law Library


The first electronic mail (email) was sent between two machines in
1972 by a BBN engineer called Ray Tomlinson working in Bolt Beranek
and Newman (BBN) company in Cambridge, Massachusetts

The top ten countries, in order of rank, in the use of email

1. Finland
2. Denmark
3. Australia
4. United States
5. Sweden
7. Singapore
8. Canada
9. Austria
10. Mexico

Americans received 38.6 billion unsolicited email messages in 1999. 
By end- 2000: 53.6 billion
By 2003: 75.6 billion. 
Ten per cent of all email is spam.


?In September 2002 it was estimated  that more than 19 billion email
messages and million instant messages  were sent daily in the US

?In  1990 there were 15 million email boxes.?


31 billion email messages were sent daily during 2002.


The statistics below are current as of 2003, but Spam statistics are
quickly outdated. These statistics were derived from a number of
different reputable sources including: Google, Brightmail, Jupiter
Research, eMarketer, Gartner, MailShell, Harris Interactive, and
Ferris Research.

Email Statistics 

Daily emails sent:	31 billion
Daily emails sent per email address:	56
Daily emails sent per person: 	174
Daily emails sent per coporate user: 	34
Daily emails received per person:	10
Email addresses per person:	3.1 average
Cost to all Internet users:	$255 million

Source: Spam Filter Review, Spam Statistics 2004,


In 1998, there were 77 million Email users in the United States
sending 246 million Email messages a day. By 2002, it is estimated
that this will escalate to 131 million users creating 576 million
messages a day on the Internet.

Here is a graph illustrating historical email message volume (1997-2002) .
Source: Jupiter Communications

Graph: Email market growth (1997-2002) .
This includes online users and total messages per day and yearly messages per user.
Source: IDC


eMarketer reports that by year-end 2002, there were 111 million email
users in US alone, eclipsing postal mail.


"The Global Webmail market has grown from 50 million users in 1998 to
300 million in 2001."


Statistics about email usage, spam volume, and virus costs


According to Messaging Online, in 1999 there were 570 million
electronic mailboxes in the world, 333.5 million of them in the United

More stats are available here:

1999 stats are available here.


The number of email addresses in use will double at a 138% growth rate
from 505 million in 2000 to 1.2 billion in 2005. The number of
person-to-person emails per day is expected to exceed 36 billion
worldwide by 2005.
Source: IDC, Email Usage Forecast And Analysis 2001 - 2005


According to the "Year-End 2000 Mailbox Report" put out by Messaging
Online, there were 891 million electronic mailboxes in use worldwide
at the end of last year. That reflects a 67% increase over 1999's
total of 533 million.


January 2005:

?A new report issued by The Radicati Group asserts worlewide e-mail
traffic increased by 35% in 2004 to a level of 76.8 billion messages
per day, and that this level of growth can be expected to continue
going forward. Corporate e-mails accounted for 83% of the traffic.?

?Spam accounted for nearly 38 billion messages per day, nearly half of
all worldwide traffic.?

?Revenue for both corporate and consumer e-mail software markets grew
by nearly 10% to $2.85 billion, and the installed base of users grew
by 22% to over 1.1 billion mailboxes. Radicati expects revenue
accruing to software vendors to grow at an average rate of about 8%,
while mailboxes grow at a rate of 10%.?

Messaging Pipeline


Worldwide Active Email Clients Distributed By Segment, 2005
Consumer Web clients: 35%
Consumer Desktop Clients: 13%
Corporate Web Clients: 10%
Corporate Desktop Clients: 42%
Under recent studies, click on link ?Email Clients Market Analysis,
2005-2009? to view pie chart.


Worldwide E-mail Traffic, 2005 - 2009
This graph provides Consumer and Corporate message traffic 
Under recent studies, click on link ?Market Numbers Quarterly Update,
Q1 2005? to view the graph.


MS Exchange Installed Base by Region, 2005
Asia/Pacific: 23%
Europe: 31%
North America: 34%
ROW: 12%
Under recent studies, click on link ?Exchange and Outlook Market
Analysis, 2005-2009? to view pie chart..


Growth to 2006

?The International Data Corporation (IDC) estimates that there are
about 700 million electronic
mailboxes in the world and that the number will grow to 1.2 billion in 2005.

 IDC estimates that e-mail volume will continue to expand rapidly.
Estimates suggest that some 31 billion messages were sent over the
Internet in 2002, and that the number will reach or surpass 60 billion
in 2006.?

OECD Background Paper for the OECD Workshop on SPAM   
January 2004$FILE/JT00157096.PDF


Webmail storage 

?In early 2004, Google announced the arrival of Gmail, a free
search-based webmail solution including new features such as a 2 GB

?This has strongly stimulated competition in this sphere, forcing most
webmails, and in particular Yahoo! Mail and Hotmail, to review their
web-mails offers and increase their storage from a few MB to several
hundred MB.?

Growth of  webmail storage space 2004-2005

?On March 31, 2004, Gmail was initially released with 1 gigabyte of
storage space per user. On April 1st, 2005 (Gmail's first birthday),
Gmail increased each user's storage quota to more than 2 gigabytes.

On April 5, 2004, Spymac became the first open-to-the-public free
email service to offer a gigabyte of storage.

On May 29, 2004, the European edition of Lycos raised its paid storage
allowance to 1 GB.

On June 15, 2004, popular web mail competitor Yahoo! Mail increased
its free storage space to 100 MB and its paid storage space to 2 GB.
(Free storage space for Yahoo! Mail was later increased to 250 MB on
December 2, 2004.)

On June 18, 2004, headquartered in Mumbai, India, increased
the storage capacity of its free public Rediffmail service to one

On June 24, 2004, Microsoft's Hotmail announced an increase of storage
space to 250 MB and 2 GB for its free and paid email services,

Throughout June, the Israeli search site Walla slowly upgraded their
service to 1 GB of space.

On July 29, 2004, Yahoo! Mail announced an increase of free storage
space to 1 GB for its users in China in hopes of getting a foothold in
the country's booming internet market.

On March 23, 2005, Yahoo! Mail announced that it will soon (in late
April) begin giving all users of its free Web e-mail service 1
gigabyte of storage.

On April 1, 2005, its first anniversary, Gmail increased its storage
size to 2 GB, and its storage has increased constantly since then at a
rate that works out to 1 GB per year, a rate that Google pledges it
will keep up as long as its servers have room. ?


Search terms used: 
Email history
Email statistics
Email facts and figures
Email users million OR billion

I hope this is helpful.

Best regards,
jallen62-ga rated this answer:5 out of 5 stars and gave an additional tip of: $8.00
Excellent as usual. Just what I needed. Thanks!

Subject: Re: A brief history of Email
From: bobbie7-ga on 10 Jun 2005 17:23 PDT
Thank you for the five stars and nice tip.
I'm glad to have helped!

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