Microsoft's Send brings its Outlook-based, WhatsApp-like messaging to Android

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Microsoft says Send is off to a rousing start since it introduced the new email-based messaging app nearly two months ago. To keep that momentum going, Microsoft expanded Send to Android on Wednesday.

The app started life as an iPhone only affair; it now comes to Google’s mobile platform in beta form. Microsoft says Send for Android will remain in preview mode until the company can “bring it up to speed” with the iPhone version.

Microsoft is also adding new international availability to the app. Originally open only to U.S. and Canadian users, Send is now available in the U.K., Brazil, and Denmark as well.

One thing that hasn’t changed, however, is Send’s limit to Office 365 business and education users. If you have a regular Hotmail or Office 365 account, Send is not for you.

Send is Microsoft’s attempt to build a simpler messaging platform on top of email. Instead of sending a proper email with a recipient, subject line, and message, Send allows you to send a short message to someone as long as you know their email address.

Since its introduction, Microsoft says it has added new features to Send as a result of user feedback, including the ability to delete conversations, add people to conversations, send direct messages to people from a group conversation, share your location, and GIF sharing.

The new Android version is available for anyone running version 4.2 (Jelly Bean) and up. Microsoft says a Windows Phone version is also in the works.

The impact on you at home: Android is the most popular mobile operating system in the world. Send's original iPhone-only nature no doubt limited its usefulness in the workplace. Now that it supports the vast majority of phones out there, businesses and schools are likely to find it much more useful—if there's room for another communication service in a world already filled with options like HipChat, Slack, WhatsApp, and even Microsoft's own Yammer.

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