As of December 3, Microsoft will charge an annual fee for MSN Mobile Hotmail, a service that lets users access email on a mobile phone or handheld computer.
The change from a free to paid service is worldwide. In the US, the service will cost $US19.99 per year if users sign up before November 25. After that, the price goes up to $US24.99 per year.
International pricing varied by country, a Microsoft spokeswoman said .
There were 38 mobile phone operators in North America, Asia and Europe that offered MSN Mobile Hotmail. Users could subscribe either directly with MSN or through their mobile operator, Microsoft said.
The move is part of Microsoft's efforts to make money out of its loss-making MSN business.
The for-pay premium services were meant to support popular free services such as MSN Hotmail and MSN Messenger, the company said.
Another for-pay MSN service is MSN Extra Storage, which offers 10MB of extra space to store mail on Microsoft's email service, as well as other features, for $19.95 per year.