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Mail.ru launches new email service for education institutions

0 1 August 2014

Mail.ru is to launch its own “Education email” (edu.mail.ru) for use by schools and higher education institutions. Any institution will be able to use a free Mail.ru email with its own domain (for example, @your-school.ru) and to provide all students and staff with their own email.

“Education mail” will contain no advertising and users will have access specifically to tools which will be useful for their studies, such as “Cloud”, “Calendar” and web messenger, with an unlimited mailbox size. Users will be able to work with a typical Mail.ru or with an Outlook type interface. The first higher educational institute to choose to switch to the new service was the Gubkin Russian State University of Oil and Gas in Moscow.

According to Ivan Begtin, from NGO “Infoculture” statistics for free email services show that many universities use Microsoft Outlook. Google is also keen to enter the sphere, holding events (such as “Forwards with Google”) at which they familiarise students and teaching staff with their products.

Mail.ru is hoping that this new model will allow them to compete with these foreign internet giants.

This news comes as statistics from the GosZatraty project show that 70% of email addresses used by Russian civil servants are from the Mail.ru and Yandex domains.

GosZatraty or ClearSpending is a non-governmental project aiming to increase general awareness of how government funds are used. They published the statistics relating to email addresses used by civil servants working for national and municipal government.

Ivan Begtin is one of the organisers of the project. He explains that the emails analysed (a little over 325,000) are those used by civil servants for placing official government orders. In total, he says, Mail.ru and Yandex account for 90% of all free addresses and around 70% of the total number. In terms of specifics, Begtin notes the fact that practically all departments of the Perm Government use Microsoft domains (permkrai.ru, using the programme Microsoft Exchange). This is also true of many universities, as mentioned above.

According to Begtin, ClearSpending is not especially concerned with collecting data on where servers are actually located, be it in Russia or abroad. This is very difficult and not particularly useful, since the majority of addresses are on free mail servers, whose location is well known.

However, these statistics, along with Mail.ru’s higher education project, do coincide with the campaign for a reduction in the use of solutions from foreign IT companies such as Google in the Russian government and education system.

Source: roem.ru, CNews

Top image vie Shutterstock

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