Jeff Bezos, CEO of AMAZON. Amazon has introduced its own delivery vans and competes with newly privatised Royal Mail / GETTY IMAGES

Service will be Amazon's latest attempt to broaden its reach away from just shopping

Amazon is planning to launch a work email service to try and take on Microsoft’s Outlook and Google’s Gmail.

While the company is best known for its online shopping site, Amazon also runs a range of cloud computing and server tools that are used by websites across the internet. The plans to introduce WorkMail, which can be used in Microsoft Outlook and other email clients, is the latest in its plans to increase that business.

Amazon will charge $4 per month for each inbox. That will give users 50GB of storage each.

Companies can also pay $6 per user to get WorkDocs bundled in. That service is Amazon’s competitor to Google Docs — and another of the company’s attempts to move from the shopping business into the office.

To keep the accounts secure, Amazon’s email will be encrypted and only the companies themselves will be able to unscramble it. Companies will also be able to specify that email can only be stored in certain countries, to further ensure privacy and keep messages out of intelligence agencies’ hands.

Companies can sign up for 30-day trials for up to 25 users now, as part of a preview.