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At the beginning of this year, we reported that Microsoft was moving a step closer to replacing Windows 11 stock Mail app with the new “One Outlook”. And now this is actually happening – Microsoft will officially replace Windows 11’s mediocre Mail & Calendar apps with the new Outlook app in early 2024.
In my recent short guide about the default mail app for Windows 11, I also warned about this, so now it’s a reality.
The default mail app won’t work anymore in Windows 11
The Mail & Calendar apps, which haven’t received significant updates or new features since the launch of Windows 11, will remain available for download until September 2024, after which they will be pulled from the Microsoft Store and no longer supported.
Microsoft has been developing and testing the new Outlook for Windows since May 2022, and by April 2023, users were given the option to try it out. Microsoft 365 administrators have been informed that the Mail and Calendar apps will be discontinued starting September 2024 and will no longer be available for download or use.
Building on the successful Outlook Web service, the new web-based Outlook client will become the default email and calendar experience on Windows PCs. By September 2024, it will support work and personal accounts, including third-party email providers like Gmail and Yahoo. The new client is currently available in preview and can be accessed through the Mail & Calendar app on Windows 11 or downloaded directly from the Microsoft Store. This change coincides with the expected release of the next major Windows update, codenamed Hudson Valley.
Although this shift was anticipated, Microsoft is now notifying users of the change. New Windows 11 devices will come with Outlook pre-installed. The new Outlook for Windows offers a superior experience to the UWP Mail and Calendar apps, featuring AI capabilities for improved email composition, compatibility with various accounts including Gmail and Yahoo, enhanced security, and a universal search across Microsoft 365 apps. It also consolidates mail and calendar functionalities into one application, eliminating the need to switch between two apps.
Microsoft will continue to support the classic Outlook for Windows desktop app, which requires a paid Office license or a Microsoft 365 subscription, catering to power users with its array of features.
I’m not using either the default Mail app or Outlook, but it’s nice to see Microsoft finally killing software that has always been mediocre.