Microsoft announced some coming improvements to my favorite email service today along with an unexpected bonus: An Outlook.com app for Android.
Still missing in action, alas, is the long-awaited update to the Outlook.com Calendar experience, which still looks like the old Hotmail site.
“To date, over 25 million [people] are already actively using the new Outlook.com,” Microsoft’s David Law wrote in a post to the Outlook Blog. “But it's still early days. We continue to listen to feedback on what enthusiasts want next, including making the switch from Gmail even easier, and build those features. So over the next few weeks, Outlook.com users will start to see new features in their inboxes.”
These new features include:
One-click Archive. A new Archive button in the Outlook toolbar—similar to the one in Gmail—will move selected messages to the Archive folder (or any other folder of your choice). I previously wrote an Outlook.com tip that explained how you could emulate the Gmail Archive functionality, but of course this is even better.
Even more keyboard shortcuts: Outlook.com has dozens of keyboard shortcuts but more are on the way. Best of all, you will be able to discover them by typing a question mark when you're in your inbox. Not surprisingly, I also wrote an Outlook.com tip about keyboard shortcuts too.
More inbox customization. Microsoft is adding more color themes (and yep, what the heck, I wrote a tip about that too), the ability to toggle a button between Reply and Reply All, and a choice between returning to the inbox or seeing the next message after deleting a message. Nice!
Microsoft also announced an new Outlook.com app for Android because, in Microsoft’s words, not all Android devices offer a consistent Exchange ActiveSync (EAS) experience. You can download the free new Outlook.com app from the Google Play store.
This is all good stuff. But seriously, Microsoft. It’s time to update the Calendar experience. ;)