Microsoft is making available a new Outlook.com app for Android, bringing with it an updated design, and new organization features.
In addition to brining the flat “Metro” style from the Outlook.com website, this update also includes organizational features like threading messaging for reading a series of emails at one time, email flagging for when an email needs to be followed up on, filtering for organizing messages of the same type, and the ability to mark junk messages as junk messages without opening the client website.
In the announcement of the new application Microsoft also used the opportunity to discuss its Exchange ActiveSync protocol, saying that, “We believe that the best mobile experience is enabled through Exchange ActiveSync–which provides a rich, powerful, network-optimized experience for Windows Phone, iOS and other mobile devices.” The statement is an obvious shot at Google who announced that it would be dropping support for Exchange ActiveSync across the board including for users of its Gmail services.
The announcement goes on to note that “However, native support for Exchange ActiveSync on Android devices varies significantly and so we have built a separate app to ensure as many people as possible can have a great Outlook.com experience across all their devices.”
According to Microsoft the response to Outlook.com in the first year has been healthy. Outlook.com officially replaced Microsoft’s Hotmail and Windows LIVE Mail services last July. With the switch in name Microsoft introduced a new and modern interface designed to be cleaner and sleeker than its predecessor. That interface also aligns with the company’s efforts on its new Windows 8, and Windows Phone 8 operating systems. Outlook.com for Android does not offer access to contacts via any sort of ‘People’ area the way the website does.
Today’s announcements didn’t discuss any change in relationship for Outlook.com and iOS. Outlook.com is not currently available as an application on iOS, though users can still access it through the service’s mobile website by going to Outlook.com
Outlook.com is directly integrated into Widows Phone, and Windows 8. As such, both of those operating have native access to all of Outlook.com’s offerings including Calendar, and People.