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posted by janrinok on Tuesday January 25 2022, @08:21AM   Printer-friendly [Skip to comment(s)]
from the I-hope-they-don't-block-themselves... dept.

Microsoft marches toward its 'One Outlook' rollout:

A year ago, word leaked about Project Monarch, Microsoft's effort to consolidate its many different versions of its Outlook mail and calendar product. At that time, as first reported by Windows Central, Microsoft was planning to roll out its so-called "One Outlook" product and strategy in 2021. Monarch is still happening, but now it seems the bulk of the new One Outlook strategy and deliverables will be rolling out this year instead.

Microsoft currently has different versions of Outlook for Windows, Mac, the Web, iOS, and Android devices (based on the Acompli technology it acquired), all of which its officials (confusingly) tend to refer to as plain-old "Outlook." The new One Outlook -- which also is expected to be branded as plain-old "Outlook" once it's available -- will work on the Windows Desktop (Win32/UWP; Intel and Arm), on the Web, and the macOS Desktop. The new Outlook will look and feel a lot like Outlook for the Web, I hear.

Microsoft has been testing Monarch/One Outlook for several months internally with increasingly large rings of employees. My sources say the company is planning to make an official announcement about One Outlook this spring. Microsoft could be ready to get a test version of the new Outlook to Windows Insiders in the Dev and Beta channels by late March or early April 2022, my contacts say. By late July or August this year, Microsoft is hoping to be able to get it to Insiders in the Slow Channel, though this target date could slip until the fall, my contacts said.


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  • (Score: 3, Funny) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday January 25 2022, @08:26AM (4 children)

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday January 25 2022, @08:26AM (#1215531)

    Microsoft has been testing Monarch/One Outlook for several months internally with increasingly large rings of employees. My sources say the company is planning to make an official announcement about One Outlook this spring. Microsoft could be ready to get a test version of the new Outlook to Windows Insiders in the Dev and Beta channels by late March or early April 2022, my contacts say.

    Funny, my contacts say that Microsoft should never have been born, and since it has, it should die in a fire.

    • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday January 25 2022, @08:31AM (3 children)

      by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday January 25 2022, @08:31AM (#1215533)

      Still the best mail client on Android though.

      Gmail, the app not the service, is absolute garbage - how many pointless UI changes have the ADHD kids at Google made to re-invent an email client?

      • (Score: 1) by shrewdsheep on Tuesday January 25 2022, @09:09AM (2 children)

        by shrewdsheep (5215) on Tuesday January 25 2022, @09:09AM (#1215537)

        Have you tried FairEmail? It's on fdroid. I am quite happy and there are many more clients I haven't tried. I havn't tried Outlook though, but in my experience functionality of decent email clients is very similar.

        • (Score: 1, Informative) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday January 25 2022, @10:33AM (1 child)

          by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday January 25 2022, @10:33AM (#1215548)

          I used K-9 from f-droid for a while.

          I gave up after the authentication pitfalls Google made its users go through with their OAUTH2 implementation. Outlook was the only client that could hassle-free connect out of the box to Gmail, Outlook, my college email and work exchange server.

          If FairEmail does that, I would prefer a FOSS solution but that's the curse of using proprietary email systems instead of vanilla IMAP/SMTP, I guess.

          • (Score: 3, Informative) by aristarchus on Tuesday January 25 2022, @11:18AM

            by aristarchus (2645) on Tuesday January 25 2022, @11:18AM (#1215550) Journal

            Outlook was the only client that could hassle-free connect out of the box to Gmail, Outlook, my college email and work exchange server.

            I wonder why this is? Can you say, "collusion"? I knew you could.

            --
            #Freearistarchus, again!!!!!1!!
  • (Score: 1, Funny) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday January 25 2022, @08:29AM

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday January 25 2022, @08:29AM (#1215532)

    increasingly large rings of employees.

    One ring to rule them all, and in the darkness bind them. In the land of Redmond, where the Windows lie!

    As any self-respecting Elf would say: Aieeeeeee!

  • (Score: 3, Funny) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday January 25 2022, @08:37AM (2 children)

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday January 25 2022, @08:37AM (#1215535)

    Just notice the dept. line!

    • (Score: -1, Redundant) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday January 25 2022, @10:00AM (1 child)

      by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday January 25 2022, @10:00AM (#1215543)

      日本では、マイクロソフトが大好きです

      • (Score: 3, Interesting) by DannyB on Tuesday January 25 2022, @03:06PM

        by DannyB (5839) Subscriber Badge on Tuesday January 25 2022, @03:06PM (#1215582) Journal

        Japan's population is decreasing. Thus a shrinking base of potential Microsoft customers.

        --
        Islamic Fatwas = BAD; MAGA Fatwas for FBI and Judges = GOOD ?
  • (Score: 4, Touché) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday January 25 2022, @12:59PM

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday January 25 2022, @12:59PM (#1215559)

    I sure hope they will be able to scan my emails so that they can directly market to me.
    I just hate to have to search for stuff and hope they can put in some banner ads and pop ups to reduce my subscription price.

  • (Score: 5, Informative) by srobert on Tuesday January 25 2022, @03:20PM (4 children)

    by srobert (4803) on Tuesday January 25 2022, @03:20PM (#1215587)

    I work in a Microsoft centered office. Any updated software from Microsoft fills me with dread. They regularly update Teams breaking it with each upgrade. Our shift to One Drive, Sharepoint, and Windows 10 persistently disrupts work flow and causes all sorts of inefficiency. I seek consolation in reminding myself that if things worked as efficiently as I think they should we'd probably get laid off.

    • (Score: 4, Insightful) by choose another one on Tuesday January 25 2022, @05:11PM

      by choose another one (515) Subscriber Badge on Tuesday January 25 2022, @05:11PM (#1215611)

      Came here to post... more or less this^^^^

      Any Microsoft "consolidation" of versions should fill users with dread. They will **** it up, they have plenty past form on this.

      Prediction: the "one outlook" when released will be a lowest-common-denominator feature set, missing many things that are critical for users' workflows. The users with the largest chequebooks and shouting the loudest will get the features they need added back in, slowly and painfully. Everyone else is ***ed unless their needs align with a big/influential user. If large numbers stick with current versions due to feature loss, MS will gradually break or cripple those versions via windows updates or (more often / likely) their integration with other products including cloud services.

      Sooner or later functionality (which you paid for remember, if it's MS Office) _will_ be removed whatever you do, upgrade, don't-upgrade, lose either way.

      [Example: trials and tribulations of OneNote "upgrades" from 2010 onwards. At one point they were badgering an "upgrade" to the UWP/"App" version which wouldn't even open locally stored notes and had many other missing features, when people kept using older desktop/win32 versions they then broke the integration of those versions with OneDrive etc. Eventually they released a new desktop-ish version that you could upgrade to which would open local notes, but some features are still missing, and cloud sync across devices still doesn't as well as office 2010 used to a decade ago.]

      MS really needs to tread carefully (a lot more than it usually does) here though IMO - an awful lot of corporate business use is tied into the Outlook/Exchange system, probably a _lot_ of Office licence sales actually depend on it. Yes, both Exchange and Outlook (win32) show their age and have crappy ancient datastore systems at the heart, but they also work, and are depended on. For a heck of a lot of folk Outlook is the first thing started at the start of the working day, and the last thing closed, many spend basically all day in it. The ecosystem of custom/semi/cots stuff built on top of outlook client is also huge, many many business critical systems, better be keeping all those APIs around... but past form says they won't.

      I wonder how many corporates stick with MS for Office etc. mainly because of Outlook client and the stuff that depends on it - sunset that and if you have to re-evaluate your email client needs, why not look at your office/document systems and collaboration etc.?

      To be scrupulously fair, MS aren't the only company with an upgrade treadmill and a couldn't-care-less attitude about removing features in upgrades, only last week I was reading a question about "how do you do X on a phone" and thinking "hang on, it's easy"... get out my phone, yup easy, but that's an ancient windows phone and Q referred to iOS, so grab wifes iPhone, yup easy just like I though, about to post a "wtf, it's easy" response when I thought let's just google that and... apparently Apple have removed the capability from iOS13, and wifes iPhone is on 12. Not turned-off-by-default, not hidden behind some settings option, not some weird additional key combination, _just gone_, "can't do that anymore user", apparently in one of the point upgrades to iOS 13, not even a major release change.

    • (Score: 2) by mcgrew on Tuesday January 25 2022, @05:16PM

      by mcgrew (701) <publish@mcgrewbooks.com> on Tuesday January 25 2022, @05:16PM (#1215614) Homepage Journal

      When I bought that nasty little Dell notebook several years ago, I couldn't get Thunderbird to work with my Rocketmail address, so I went with MS's default mail client. They seem to suck twice as hard with every new version.

      We had whatever client came with their network gear at work, until they switched to pretty much all Microsoft. I absolutely hated Outlook. The upgrade when we went to XP was worse. But the one that comes with W10 now? It's garbage covered in shit.

      I bought the house I was renting in 2019, getting a mortgage from the bank I'd been using since the '90s. Just installed Thunderbird on the tower, and apparently Microsoft had put all the emails from my bank in the spam folder that I never open. I should be the only one able to mark mail coming to me as spam!

      If they think I'm going to pay money for a shitty email client when there are far, far better ones out there fpr free, how stupid do they think I am?

      --
      Free Martian whores! [mcgrewbooks.com]
    • (Score: 2) by mcgrew on Tuesday January 25 2022, @05:19PM

      by mcgrew (701) <publish@mcgrewbooks.com> on Tuesday January 25 2022, @05:19PM (#1215617) Homepage Journal

      I feel your pain, there were few things I didn't like about my job but only one real pain in the ass: Microsoft. SO glad I'm finally retired and don't have to use someone else's computer!

      --
      Free Martian whores! [mcgrewbooks.com]
    • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday January 26 2022, @01:46PM

      by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday January 26 2022, @01:46PM (#1215809)

      Good news. Microsoft has run out of new ideas for stuff to break so will now break more old stuff. I hate GPO changes.

  • (Score: 2, Informative) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday January 25 2022, @05:04PM (2 children)

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday January 25 2022, @05:04PM (#1215608)

    The new Outlook will look and feel a lot like Outlook for the Web, I hear.

    Great, let's slim everything down to literally the lowest common denominator...

    • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday January 25 2022, @07:25PM (1 child)

      by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday January 25 2022, @07:25PM (#1215656)

      If there's any chance of success, it needs a common code base. Javascript is probably the only choice across the platforms listed.

      Though each platform will have a different JS-engine-wrapping integration layer, so us pessimists can enjoy predicting failure stemming from there.

      • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday January 25 2022, @11:40PM

        by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday January 25 2022, @11:40PM (#1215721)

        So you do agree, the lowest common denominator.

        I recommend a video called "the death of JavaScript". Highly entertaining, probably and unfortunately prophetic as we...

  • (Score: 3, Interesting) by progo on Tuesday January 25 2022, @05:18PM

    by progo (6356) on Tuesday January 25 2022, @05:18PM (#1215616) Homepage

    In Outlook for Windows it's impossible to read message headers in one window while you compose a message in another, because Message Properties locks all other windows in this process. Same with editing mail sorting rules and trying read stored messages as reference for that activity.

    If this effort makes these problems go away, I'm in favor of it.

  • (Score: 2, Interesting) by j-beda on Tuesday January 25 2022, @05:55PM (1 child)

    by j-beda (6342) on Tuesday January 25 2022, @05:55PM (#1215628) Homepage

    There is a nice slider switch on Mac Desktop Outlook to use the "New Outlook" - no idea if this related to 'One Outlook'.

    Unfortunately, the "New Outlook" is unable to work with mailboxes “On My Computer”. As of Dec 8 Microsoft does say in one of their roadmap/update postings that they are working on having these folders accessible in "the new Outlook":

    Local data is saved in “On My Computer” folder in the navigation pane. The items in these folders are saved only on your computer and are not synchronized with a mail server. In the new Outlook for Mac, we are working to migrate and support the local folders.

    Now, maybe if one had infinite online storage this would not be an issue, but Microsoft's whole hosted Exchange system limits mail storage to 50GB chunks, which is not that hard to fill up when people are sending around lots of hefty file attachments and have a significant amount of email passing through (ie the project lead who has lots of team members ccing them on things with lots of external people who need to be informed with status updates.) Over the past few years I have managed to get people to regularly check their quotas and move thing to storage "On My Computer" as needed.

    I suppose we could set up a local IMAP server and just have people use that for email storage, but the whole point to moving to Microsoft 365 was to avoid the work needed to maintain these types of services, the network infrastructure, and all the associated bits and pieces (certificates, DNS, etc.)

    • (Score: 2, Interesting) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday January 25 2022, @06:39PM

      by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday January 25 2022, @06:39PM (#1215646)

      Good luck with the storage. My personal beef with the new outlook was that it didn't open the .ics-files, totally impossible to import any kind of iCal files kind of killed it for me so I stuck with the old outlook until they fixed it (the support request was hanging on their wish list site (suggestions) over a year)...

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