Microsoft Outlook and email apps for Windows, Mac and the web will get some big changes in the coming months as part of the company’s “One Outlook” initiative. Why are you waiting though? You can get a preview of what your Outlook experience will turn into now.
Later this year, you can expect Microsoft to standardize the user experience across Outlook apps on Mac, Windows, and the web, as well as Mail and Calendar apps on Windows 10. And then, in 2022, each of those apps will go to a client. “Monarch” is new, which means you’ll be using the same app on all platforms.
to me Windows Central, Microsoft says the new Monarch client will add more OS-level integrations for Windows and Mac, including “offline storage, sharing goals, and notifications”, so the new Outlook will look like a native application on every desktop operating system. Office or web browser you are using.
Rolling out these changes will be slow, but you can get a preview of the new interface across platforms by installing the new Mail Progressive Web App (PWA) today.
How to install Outlook PWA on Edge Chromium:
- Go to outlook.com.
- Click “…” To open the menu
- Go to Applications, tap “Install this website as an application.”
- The PWA will open once the installation is complete.
On Google Chrome:
- Open outlook.com in a new tab.
- tap on + At the far right of the URL bar (This may take a few moments to appear. Try clicking in the URL bar if it does not appear).
- Click “Installations” Upon request.
Compared to the Mail and Calendar apps on Windows 10, Outlook PWA’s look is a lot simpler. It lacks the visual customization options you would use to tweak Outlook in wild ways, but it’s much cleaner and includes the same email features, in addition to calendar and to-do list views. The similarity should make the transition to PWA – or ultimately the new user interface for the different Outlook and Mail apps later this year – that much easier.
Outlook PWA also includes easily accessible shortcuts for other MS applications like Word, OneDrive, One Note, Meet, and Skype. You can even manage your Xbox Live and Skype accounts from your profile settings, if they use the same email address.
This is indeed a much more robust, surface-level integration in the MS ecosystem, and I’m curious to see how it will expand once Monarch is introduced in 2022.
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