Outlook is now friends with Facebook

Microsoft has added Facebook to its Outlook e-mail system in an yet another attempt to ride the social media wave.

The software giant made a half-hearted attempt to steal the social notworking leader's thunder when it introduced Outlook Social Connector to the Office 2010 suite of apps last year, but it looks like Microsoft has succumbed to Facebook's omnipresence in an 'if you can't bet 'em, join 'em' move.

Outlook users will be able to pull their Facebook 'friends' and their profile pictures into Outlook, and view messages, although they will have to launch the original web site in order to post replies.

Facebook updates will automatically be pushed into your inbox, but to avoid privacy issues, only email addresses linked to Facebook accounts will be integrated.

Facebook for Outlook is an add-on to the Outlook Social Connector and can be downloaded now through the normal update channels. We're also hearing that it will work with Office 2003 and 2007.