Microsoft is informing users of Windows 10 and Windows 11 about an automatic migration from the old Mail and Calendar apps to the new Outlook app. These built-in apps have been available since 2015 and have provided an easy way to check emails and manage calendars.
While Windows 11 initially included these apps, Microsoft now encourages users to switch to the new Outlook app.
Currently, this message is only visible to paid subscribers, but it will soon be available to free users as well. If you’re a Windows user, you can try the new Outlook version by enabling the ‘Try the new Outlook’ toggle located in the top right corner of the Windows Mail app.
Currently, only paid customers can see the message in the screenshot, but free Outlook users will soon have access to it. The full-featured Mail & Calendar apps are being replaced by a web-based alternative powered by Microsoft Edge that is available to everyone, including both Microsoft 365 customers and those with free accounts.
This action is a part of Microsoft’s ongoing attempts to streamline the Windows email interface and roll out “One Outlook.” The new web-based Outlook app through Microsoft Edge is intended to take the role of the current Win32 Outlook and UWP Mail & Calendar apps.
Microsoft announced the start of the migration process for users of the Mail and Calendar apps in a support page available to Microsoft 365 business users only. Some users may experience today’s alert informing them of the impending changes to Windows 11’s mail programs as part of this transition.
Starting in August 2023, Microsoft will automatically move some Mail & Calendar app users to the new Outlook for Windows. However, users can opt-out and return to the previous apps by clicking a toggle in the top right corner. According to a Microsoft 365 advisory message (MC650424), the auto-migration process will begin in late August 2023, and users will have the choice to switch back if they prefer.
In 2024, all new Windows 11 devices will come pre-installed with the new Outlook for Windows. Microsoft assures that the transition will be “user-friendly” to ensure a smooth experience for users. To switch to the new Outlook, users can click on “Try the new Outlook.” When the toggle is clicked, Microsoft will download the new Outlook for Windows from the Microsoft Store, which may take a few minutes to complete.
Microsoft is seeking feedback on the new Outlook experience to make necessary improvements before ending support for Windows Mail and Calendar in 2024. They plan to automatically download and install the new Outlook app in the upcoming months and redirect all users. However, you can still switch back to the old Outlook apps, which are accessible through the Microsoft Store.