I will like to start with the 3 email services that I have been using for long time – Gmail Beta (GB), Yahoo Beta (YB) and Hotmail Beta (HB – also known as Live Mail).
GB provides 2.65 GB of space till date. YB – 1 GB where as HB provides 2 GB but out of these 3, only GB is live and you can get GB account over phone or by invitation whereas in case of YB and HB, you need to be on the waiting list unless you use hacks (which are illegal) to get the account.
GB is compatible with most of the browsers including IE, Firefox, Netscape, Opera & Safari. YB is compatible with IE, Firefox and Opera. YB opens its simple interface in Netscape. And in case of HB, it is fully functional in IE. HB has included few features recently in order to make it compatible with Firefox but still all of its features don’t work in Firefox.
The organization of mails in GB can be done through labels where as in case of both YB & HB, it is through folders.
YB & HB provides spell checking in IE whereas GB provides spell checking in multiple browsers and that too for dozen of languages.
GB & YB allows POP option whereas HB doesn’t provide it.
The unique feature provided by YB & HB is that you can drag mails and drop them in appropriate locations whereas this feature is missing in GB.
All said, in my view, GB is still far ahead as compared to YB and HB. I think, it is the best and most reliable mail service these days.