Microsoft released the first version of its completely-new Outlook email app for Windows back in May, but it had many limitations. It’s still not ready to replace the Outlook we all know and love, but there are some new features, and more people can try it.

The new Outlook is based on the web app (also known as Outlook.com), and will likely arrive on other platforms in the future. However, the initial testing release was missing many features (offline, re-ordering folders, IMAP, POP, etc.) and was only compatible with Microsoft 365 accounts managed by an organization. If you didn’t have a school email or a Microsoft account provided by your workplace, you couldn’t even try it out.

Adding an email account in the new Outlook
Adding a new email account Microsoft

Starting today, anyone on the Office Insider program can try out the new Outlook on Windows. Microsoft is rolling out a “new Outlook” button in the current Outlook application for switching between versions, and a similar toggle will soon appear in the Windows Mail and Calendar apps for Windows Insiders (since the Outlook app is planned to replace both). Microsoft says there’s no data loss involved in switching back and forth.

The good news is that the new Outlook is better than it was a few months ago. It’s still based on a web app, which isn’t great, but Microsoft has added support for personal Microsoft accounts. That means it now works with email addresses from Outlook.com, Hotmail or Windows Live. There’s also a simplified ribbon layout and dynamic column widths in the calendar, on top of everything in the initial May release (the new design, email pinning, etc.).

Calendar board view in dark mode
Calendar board view in dark mode Microsoft

Microsoft says support for third-party email accounts, offline mode, ICS import, searching folders, and other features are still in development. It requires Windows 10 Version 1809 or newer. There’s still no word on a release for Mac or other platforms.

Source: Office Insider Blog

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Corbin Davenport is the News Editor at How-To Geek, an independent software developer, and a podcaster. He previously worked at Android Police, PC Gamer, and XDA Developers.
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