Starting tomorrow, you will be able to download an update for the Mail, Calendar, and People apps from the Windows Store. These apps are designed to manage communication seamlessly on Windows PCs and tablets across multiple accounts—Outlook.com, Exchange, and others. We know our customers typically have two or more email accounts for personal use and work use, they use these accounts throughout the day, and they have a large volume of email they’re continuously managing. So this update will bring improvements to your Windows experience across your whole life - your personal communication and your work. You will see big improvements to performance and additional new features to make it easier to connect with friends and colleagues, manage your inboxes, create and send email, and manage your calendar.
Once the update is available tomorrow, just tap or click on the “Updates” link that appears in the top right-hand corner of the Windows Store to install the update.If you have the Windows Store pinned to your Start screen, its live tile will alert you that you have an update available. You are required to go to the Windows Store to get the update as it won’t install automatically.
I am really excited about this update for the Mail, Calendar, and People apps. The rest of this post provide more details on many of the new features included in the update.
Keeping my inbox organized:
Like many of us, I consistently check email throughout the day and have multiple accounts for work and my personal life. I am always going between multiple email accounts: one for personal email and another for work. The Mail app allows me to view all of my email accounts and toggle between them to manage all of my email. With the Mail app update – staying in touch and organized across your work and personal life gets easier.
Everyone has their own set of habits when it comes to checking email. For me, I check all my unread messages first, and the Mail app now lets me filter to see only unread emails. I’m also big on organizing my email into folders. You can create and delete folders directly within the Mail app and also select all items within a folder and move them (or delete them all).
I also often flag important emails that will need more of my attention, and the Mail app now lets me do this. Flagged emails will show in your inbox (or any other folder in the account) and in a “Flagged” folder within the Mail app so you can see all flagged email messages. Quick power user tip: the insert key toggles the flag on a selected email message.
Many of these new features are now part of the app commandsin the Mail app that can be brought up by swiping from the bottom or top of your screen or by right-clicking with a mouse.
I spend a lot of time writing and replying to emails so being able to manage draft email messages is essential. When you first start a new email draft, the “To” line is populated by “smart contact suggestions”. Essentially, the Mail app will remember and suggest the contacts that you email regularly. And if you’re working on a draft message, that message will now show up automatically at the top of your inbox. If you’re replying to an email, the draft will show up within the email conversation. Going back to find and finish draft emails is super easy.
Speaking of drafting email messages – improvements have been made for composing email messages too. You can now add, edit, and delete hyperlinks and edit bulleted or numbered lists more easily in email messages. Again, this can all be found as part of the app commands in the Mail app. The Mail app also works a lot better in keeping the format of content pasted into an email message from web pages, Microsoft Word documents, and other apps.
By default, the Mail app only keeps email messages within a two-week timeframe. This is done in order to preserve disk space and battery life on your device, and you can always change that setting. However with the update to the Mail app, you can now search for email on the server making it easy to find any email message you might be looking for.
Everything I mentioned above applies to both personal and work email accounts. If your business supports rights-managed email, you can do that now too. The Mail app now supports reading and composing rights-managed email messages. The Mail app will also pull contacts from a Microsoft Exchange global address list and will provide contact information from Exchange—just click on the person’s name in email.
Coordinating my calendar(s):
The Calendar app is designed to align with the different habits people have for managing their calendars. That means being able to stay organized across your personal and work calendars.
Visually, the Calendar app has been updated to make looking at your calendars easier to read. Gone are the solid blocks of colors – instead, those colors are reflected in a small bar on the left of each appointment.
A new “Work week” view has been added to the app commands.
The Calendar app now accommodates the use of scheduling assistant for business accounts that use Microsoft Exchange. Anyone used to scheduling meetings in Microsoft Outlook and being able to see a person’s availability will be able to see the same thing in the Calendar app.
You can now also forward meeting invitations, send email to all meeting attendees (great for sending out meeting agendas), choose more recurrence options for reoccurring meetings or events and set end dates for recurring events.
Connecting with people:
The People app is your one stop destination for the important people at work and in your personal life. It’s easier to stay in touch, manage and connect with the people in your life across multiple services such as Outlook.com, Facebook, Twitter, Skype - and your work.
You can now navigate the People app more easily by swiping from the top (or right-clicking) to bring up the app commands. There is new navigation at the top that allows you to quickly move between your profile where you can post status updates and Tweets or see what your friends are posting on the “What’s new” feed. You can also now post to your friends’ Facebook wall.
And finally, you can more quickly filter your “What’s new” feed by social network.
Improving your Windows experience:
The features that are part of this update for the Mail, Calendar, and People apps are designed to align with the different habits people have for staying on top of their email and schedule and staying organized. These updates are part of our ongoing focus and commitment to continually improving your Windows experience. This means that the experience on Windows PCs and tablets will keep getting richer.
UPDATE 4/3: See this blog post on how to get your Google Calendar events in Windows 8.
Getting better but still not there (even in Windows 8.1 Preview).... you should look at Windows Phone 8 as an example of some of the features needed:
* need Tasks (as well as Calendar) to sync with Exchange, Office 365, outlook.com, Google Tasks, etc.
* need to be able to add own pictures/select pictures in People app
* either make Skype properly manage FaceBook messaging (and load quicker) or bring back the Messaging app
* allow FaceBook messaging from the People app on Windows 8.1/WIndows RT 8.1
* allow drag and drop for mouse/keyboard users in these apps
@Brandon LeBlanc: sorry for that but it is so hard to contact people from MS to tell them that the product (Outlook 2013) is not so good as it should be. And many other people want this feature - not only i.
so it's good to know that you recognize it and i hope you will tell this "problem" the right people, so that they could fix it as soon as possible.
Sorry and Thanks! :)
Opa114 - we hear your feedback - thanks for leaving a comment! However, you do not need to keep posting the same comment over and over.
please fix outlook 2013 for supporting sending from outlook.com aliases and connected accounts ike the new windows 8 mail app. and please fix it soon!!!
Ik heb begrepen dat deze update bedoeld is voor Windows Phone 7 en dus niet functioneert op de door mij gewenste HTC Windows Phone 8X. Is dat met zekerheid te zeggen?
Is there any central location to add our voices to feature requests that Microsoft teams monitor? Kind of like windowsphone.uservoice.com, but but for for Windows 8 and its apps.
The Mail, Calendar and People apps are getting better! ? Nope.
No ability to backup off line.
When will we be able to sync Google Calendar via CalDAV or CardDAV?! I have all my school's schedule and assignments from the University and I cannot sync it Windows 8 Calendar. We do not want to sign into both accounts every single time. How would you guys would be able to solve this issue?
Messenger app is worse than before. I've been trying to post this problem on your forums, but it won't let me. For some reason, Facebook double posts your message in Messenger and it's really annoying. I'm on a PC tablet running Windows 8 with core i5. Come on, guys, get with Facebook and fix this new problem.
It seems crazy the the People App does not let me add a photo.
Why is this a problem?
cleverclogs I think the variation my be due to using different music databases but not entirely sure. I'm double checking.
please fix outlook 2013 for sending from my outlook.com aliases/connected accounts!!!!!! like the new windows 8 mail app
(I wish I could press ENTER to make a new line on this!)..... Why is it that 1) I have to manually find the album via "match album info", select "don't see the right album", 2) try and find the album from a list of random ones, have the metadata update in the app 3) go back to "match album info" 4) select correct album. THEN, and this is the best part... NOT ALL TRACKS GET MATCHED! I have entire albums where tracks get missed out and won't ever match! What the hell!
... why is it that the Metadata varies so dramatically to what's in Windows Media Player?
Brandon, I know this is very off-topic, but I can't see anywhere else to write it. It's regarding the Music app...
Why did you change the send shortcut. Ctrl + Enter works on outlook and other ms apps and used to work on mail but now you have changed it to alt + S. What an stupid thing to do.
sorry, but I havent figured out what the hack got better with this update of calendar!?
Before the update everything worked nice and smoothly, also astonishing good looking.
And now, thanks to the good cooperation with google everythings broken down?!
Nada Khaled - what type of email account are you experiencing this on? Exchange, Outlook.com, other?
Ever since I installed the updates, and my mail tile shows that I have 2 unread emails when in fact I don't have any unread emails and I don't know how to get rid of it. Any ideas?
RogerT - it should show up on your Surface RT as well. Let me know if it's still not showing up. You can also go into the Windows Store and manually check for app updates too. Or try uninstalling and reinstalling the apps.
PC_Repair - We're noticing your comments are all generally one-line sentences with a URL link to the same website. We want to have you continue commenting here but your comments often seem like advertising for a website and has been flagged by others as spam. Could you perhaps avoid including the URL link you've been using in future comments? Thanks!
Those of you asking about getting an updated calendar for Outlook.com - check out this post from the Outlook.com team: blogs.office.com/.../take-control-of-your-schedule-with-a-modern-calendar-experience-for-outlook-com.aspx
Inline images in emails still result in prompts for authentication when they're being served up from an intranet with authentication. This is really irritating because it prompts once per image. Ideally this should just pass over the logged on user credentials, like Outlook does, but even removing the repeated prompts would be an improvement. thanks
I would like to see some integration between Calendar and People. Seems silly that you cant make a calendar appointment from a contact or that you cant add a contact to a calendar appointment. Overall though I like the apps.
I loved the solid colors! How can I get them back? Please help, thank you :)
How about the fact that this update has made it so even my gmail account won't work. I knew the calendar stopped updated a while ago. But now i have to use the web access for my gmail. Thank you microsoft for making windows 8 totally useless for me. I only used it for web surfing and email. It would have been nice if you put in a warning screen before the update so users could have opted not to update.
please fix outlook 2013 for sending from my outlook.com aliases/connected accounts like the new windows 8 mail app! :)
Sending out an update without any WARNINGS (google calendar sync), good job Microsoft.
Sooo...I have a question. Why did this update show on my Windows 8 PC but NOT on my Windows Surface RT tablet? My PC now has mail version 17.0.1114.318, but my surface remains 16.4.4406.1205.
Should I see it also as an update on Surface? and if so, then why doesn't it?
Regardless of who (MS or Google) is "to blame", I am very annoyed that there was NO WARNING that accepting this update would cause the loss of google calendar sync.
For the average "Joe Public", the first they would know of this change in policy would be when they get the error message after updating. TERRIBLE.
We do not all comb the web searching for policy changes by software companies !
Robert Trance - glad you liked the updates and glad you've noticed improvements with IE10 too!
abm and NiallG - thanks for the comments and the suggestions!
dchitnis - this blog post was written to highlight all the new features included in the update for the Mail, Calendar, and People apps based on my own experience. I was only framing the update up from my perspective to show off the new stuff. Much of the improvements included in this update were designed to address feedback and suggestions we've seen for many of our customers. I am sorry my post gave you the wrong impression.
For those blaming MS for the issue, here is the problem and Calendars stopped syncing before this update to the applications, I was already looking into it over a week ago. See this link for your culprit. support.google.com/.../answer.py It's well hidden and difficult to find, you will see that Google more or less is only supporting IOS and Android now. They've declared war on those of us who use Windows and Microsoft products to retrieve and view our calendars etc. I noticed it a couple weeks ago when I suddenly wasn't able to add Gmail accounts to RT mail as long as anything besides Email was checked to Sync.
Please take your IRE to the "Don't Be Evil" company that has chosen to act in clearly anti competitive ways.
What the heck is up with Google and removing calendar syncing for MS products? They support IOS,etc... Is there a plan to get Calendar support back into the products via MS or should we just assume Google has turned evil and abandon GMail and other Google products?
Thanks for the update, but please add a big warning about updating the app, because it can't sync the Google calendar anymore, sigh.
How about a work week that starts on Sunday?
Thank you so very much for rolling out this update. Congratulations to live team!
I have three suggestions, which may help improving the user experience:
- Messaging hub to integrate Skype messaging in both Windows 8 and Windows Phone 8.
- Mail app and Outlook.com (web-based) to include attachment-email option from any folder (inbox, sent, my_custom_folder) to simulate outlook desktop client's drag email(s) in compose box, which is also present in Office 365 web.
- Mail app and Outlook.com app to bind Ctrl+A shortcut to To, Cc and Bcc fields to select all the entered addresses. Once selected all the addresses can be removed using _backspace and can be copied to clipboard. Also, on Outlook.com double clicking the contact in To, Cc or Bcc should open the context menu similar to the one in Mail app.
Please consider these in the future release of your products.
Unfortunately, what you fail to mention is that what used to work in the old app - sync'ing with a Google account calendar, now no longer works. I don't care whose fault it is, there are those of us who spend a lot of money with both Microsoft and Google, and you're doing us a HUGE disservice by taking away something that once worked. I use(d) the Calendar app daily to manage my schedule, which was really my Google calendar and kept me in sync with my Android phone. NOW THAT IS ALL GONE. Thanks SO MUCH for the birthday present, MS & Google. YOU SUCK.
Brandon, it sounds like these apps will only get updates that matter to you. For all Mail app updates, your justifications start something like 'I spend a lot of time ...'. It would probably do more good if suggestions from users other than you were taken into consideration.
One of my main issues with the People app was that the live tile showed notifications of retweets, but when you open the app, they aren't in Notifications. Don't suppose you've fixed that?
please fix outlook 2013 for sending from my outlook.com aliases/connected accounts!!!!!!
Btw, i see quite some enhancements with IE 10 Metro as well, like with rendering certain sites is now flawless, use of social buttons, other problems from past are corrected, and good to use now
And they are indeed better too! I like these apps, using Calendar too often enough, all works incredibly, smooth and pretty
Small improvements, but I notice that, like IE10, the Mail app STILL can't print out a range of pages - you get all or nothing. Contrast that with Microsoft's Reader App, which CAN print out a range of pages.
Clearly the Mail and IE teams don't know how to use the new printing subsystem in Windows 8. Doesn't bode well...
Please add the ability to set the default font size for composing new messages / or have the ability to reply as plain text instead of HTML.
Its weird if the target recipient doesn't have calibri installed.
Also I've been waiting so long for you guys to add this, and thank you very much for adding the "Unread" mailbox. Are there other improvements like ability to search attachments like has:attachments or something?
i have problems with messaging app the app is always telling me "getting info" and when finish say to me"we can't send a message right now" please help me i recently updated and the app have the same problem
Please, please, please, add Facebook calendar integration.
POP3 isn't the nicest interface in the world, but it is popular and should be supported, especially since the initial GUI to add accounts includes it.
That's really sort of ridiculous, if not plain impolite to offer something that isn't supported.
I enjoy using Windows 8 and apps like mail and calendar. I like 'em especially when they stay true to the Metro design language, which is about content first (and typography and other stuff). May I ask why the mail app team has decided to break the cleaness of Metro and put a magnifier on the screen i the mail app? They've also surfaced the device > Print function in the app command bar. The Reader app suddenly got a "Print" icon too - what's next? A magnifier because people come from iPad don't know how Metro Works and complain about it?
Microsoft, you're doing yourself and the devs a disservice by being lax on the Metro design guidelines. By introducing artefacts from the desktop to the Windows Store apps, we'll soon enough see apps with all sorts of icons representing "surfaced" functions in the app main screen, and it'll end up exactly like the situation with iPad apps - a mess designwise:: each app is a different beast in design - not a lot of continuity. A mess.
Please try to find ways to educate users about how to share content, doing a search and sending content to a printer etc. whitout resorting to "bending" the design principles.
Thanks for the updates - looking a lot better!
As per other peoples comments - lack of POP3 support is still the elephant in the room. It doesn't matter what ISP's etc 'should' be using (IMAP etc) - reality is that major ones are mostly still not doing this - or won't allow it from external connections (and won't anytime soon - Winrt marketshare so far certainly isn't going to speed up their schedules). Many folks are having to resort to using webmail instead (which is downright painful experience for WinRT tablets).
This should really be the #1 priority for upcoming Mail updates - all the features in the world don't matter if you can't login to your email in the first place.
For us more hardcore users - any updates on the WinRT of Outlook 2013 - heard it's doing the rounds internally but would really like to get my mits on this,
Still no share function for people app :)
can we add images with the email signature option...
Gary - the smart contact suggestions are based on the contacts you actually email back and forth with not what you type in. So you shouldn't have to worry about wrong email addresses showing up with typos. You should check it out when the update hits tomorrow.
@amnesia yeah IMAP. Let's walk through a scenario. I want to use Outlook.com but I am on a Mac. There is no Exchange ActiveSync support for the Mac. I like using a native mail client. You have two choices, POP or IMAP. IMAP is MUCH better than POP. It also happens to be an open standard which pretty much every email client on the planet supports.
Let's say Outlook.com doesn't add IMAP, CardDAV, and CalDAV and I stick with Gmail. Now I can't use THAT to sync contacts or calendars on Windows 8 anymore (I use both Mac and Windows regularly) using the Metro apps. Why? Because unlike Apple, Google, and everyone else, Microsoft isn't supporting the standards.
Well, the Windows Phone team is, they are adding support for CardDAV and CalDAV to Windows Phone (WP8 is amazing btw). The Windows 8 team needs to do the same.
If Microsoft supports these standards better they will earn the trust of savvy customers. This is important because their argument about superior privacy of Outlook.com vs. Gmail does have merit.
hopefully a default folder in WP8 will be SENT Folder! -
will it now sync the google calendar?? see some of us use google for everything.
“smart contact suggestions"
any way to delete one of these yet? tyoe something in wrong once and it keeps suggesting the wrong email address.
Can't wait for the update
The online calendar (still missing it's UI update) has two great options, agenda view and the to-do list. The calendar app would be so much better with these as well. I am not sure if this update will make me use the calendar app more or less.
On the mail side, personally I just want the outlook.com page with a live tile, notifications and an icon on the lock screen, that would be so much better than the mail app you have today.
Any news on Facebook calendar integration?
Does this mean that I might actually be able to get the people app to work now? Hasn't worked since I installed 8 in Jan !!!
Chris Dunphy IMAP? Are you serious? Just in case you forgot, it's 2013.
Very surprised to see there's still not going to be any way to manage Out of Office through the mail app for an Exchange mailbox.
I would really like to hear an anser on POP3 for email. Is it coming soon or never? Why was it left out when it is in the WP8 mail client?
taglicht - Outlook 2013 is a desktop app and the Calendar app mentioned in this post is a Windows Store app. The Calendar app can use the same email accounts you use in Outlook 2013 - like Exchange or Outlook.com - to sync but don't sync to each other.
Any news on Messaging? One feature I would really like to see is a "launch in snapped view when responding to notifications" option, so when you click on a notification it doesn't break your workflow. There could be a toggle for that and also one for left or right side so when you click a notification Messaging launches the conversation in sidebar snapped view automatically...PLEASE TELL SOMEONE TO ADD THIS FEATURE
Peter Schott - You now have this option in the Mail app settings to turn off "When an unread message is selected, mark it as read".
This shows what a fantastic job the Windows Phone team is doing. The People app in WP is far superior to what is available in Win8. I wish the WP group had more influence in Windows. It seems the Win team borrowed the tile concept and stopped there with the similarities. Too bad, really.
Is it going to be possible to sync more than one calendar from Gcalendar?
Still no POP Mail support? Come on MS, how hard could that be to add POP support.
QUESTION: In the Mail App, are there plans to allow the user to use groups when adding recipients?
I beg you, please release Outlook for WIndows RT! Surface RT is the best product that is currently available - but no one in our business environment could use it because of only one reason: it lacks Outlook!!!
Are tasks going to be managed in this release, or are we still going to have to continue to have to use Outlook to be able to do this... If so, a major limitation.
Any chance that we'll have an option to leave items unread instead of marking them unread each time? I miss that option that exists in most e-mail clients.
I hope this is just a small small example of what's coming:
How about Groups? When one wants to share with more that a few people the share doesn't remember a large list; therefore, groups. Just like Windows Phone. Also, allow for pinning a group and seeing Group info.
What about being able to hide the accounts and folders side bars or be able to resize
What about having the text of the email fit in the window when you zoom in and out (try viewing email on Surface RT) and you will see how important it is to get real estate to view instead of having nearly 40% of the screen occupied by folder and email lists
What about the ability to attach an email
I hope that the use of the screen when viewing updates from people is more efficient. The first page for a contact is just inefficient. 1 update and summary of the person. You can certainly fit in a great deal more info. Look at the twitter lists
Seriously, there is so much unused screen real estate. Why not take note from apps like flipboard (hands down the best app for reading) or Bento (trying but still has room)?
Is synchronization between Outlook (2013) and "Calendar APP" (or whatever it's called) now possible?
The Messages app needs updates too
@mike2k, In WP7.x, the updates were at the mercy of the carrier. My wife's T-Mobile phone didn't get updates either. That has changed in WP8 where Microsoft has taken the updates away from the carriers. All is not lost for you though, you can install the latest Wp7.8 updates yourself. I've done this to three phones and it works great but it takes some time since it applies each update in succession. In the case of my wife's T-Mobile, it was 7 releases behind - SEVEN! It took 45 minutes to complete. All data and settings were kept in tact through every upgrade. Check out this simple tool for applying the updates. windowsphonehacker.com/.../want_windows_phone_7.8_now_try_this_easy_tool-01-31-13
Will you able to share an image to Facebook/Twitter trough the People app with this new update?
I applaud MS for being quick to update core apps. It's to bad they won't do he same for me, as an early WP adopter. Not one flippin update to my 7.5 phone in 16 months. The disappearing keyboard bug has me wanting to throw this phone off a cliff. MS's lack of support has helped me decide never to invest in another WP again.
Thanks for nothing
Great. I like to see improvements on Windows.
These are the apps that had to go out with Windows 8 in october. You are too late!!! C'mon!!
I don't read anything about Messaging, why? It's already a beta app... there's no file sharing and I can't message with Skype User!
For Windows Blue can you add a jumper list on the desktop mode to open recently/favorite app/program? Ok, there will not be a Start menu but this is necessary!
I don't understand why you guys will HIDE necessary commands and buttons and you expect users to SWIPE up or down or whatever extra steps they need to perform before exposing the relevant app menu buttons. This is just extra step, click, swipe...just to perform a task that should be perform with one click or tap. This Metro UI full screen design sometimes makes no sense. Forcing users to this full screen view, with hidden app menu buttons is so counter intuitive to any modern UI design. These menus should be visible by default and should not be hidden and you expect the user embark on some exploratory expedition just to locate menu buttons.
Owen Cutajar - these are Windows Store apps and the update will come in through the Windows Store for you to install like other Windows Store apps. Thanks for your comment!
mayur89 - I suggest reading this post from the Skype Team regarding Messenger: blogs.skype.com/.../skype-and-messenger-coming-together-the-next-chapter
Question: So .. if this is an update to Windows, how come I can't install it from Windows Update? Wouldn't that be more consistent with the other updates to Windows that automatically get pulled down to my machine?
I'm not exactly sold on the people app. I think it will just make social media more complicated. But I like the calendar app. I like the colors that separate family from works events, as demonstrated. www.geekchoice.com/washington-dc
brinke - no, you don't have to have an Outlook.com account to use the Mail, Calendar and People apps!
Great work - an announcement regarding an update to the Outlook.com Calendar would also be great. Also, maybe an update to your Reader app to fix the stylus-annotation bug after saving?
Please update Messenger as well, if I want to Go offline for Facebook, I have No options. So, what I have to do is, use advance settings from facebook and check on limited to Visible people...
sounds great. when will it be possible to use Skype for Windows 8 with a different outlook.com account? when can I synchronise my MS Outlook contact and calendar details with the outlook.com calendars?
When is Calendar on outlook.com going to be updated?
Can we drag a mail to a folder now?
nice improvements to mail. notice you left out "messaging" -- is that app being removed from the package since the Skype switch over?
Microsoft. You are _so_ close to being a company that people like and respect again... but you need to be brave and embrace diversity by adding support for CalDAV and CardDAV to your Windows 8 apps like you are doing for Windows Phone. While you are at it, add standards supports to Outlook.com (don't forget IMAP as well) so I can use it properly on my Mac and I'll switch from Gmail, because I do like your new products a lot!
Is this for Outlook.com users?
Are you able to collapse folders now?