After the massive Outlook overhaul last year, Microsoft is back to refining it again.
The company recently announced Outlook.com beta, a new version of the web email client. Users can help developers improve it by giving feedback to the team’s engineers and designers. Microsoft is showing potential with beta which they believe will bring a faster Outlook.com with new ways to personalize emails, a smarter inbox and calendar, and a “more connected” People experience.
To opt in to the beta version, click the “Try the beta” toggle in the top right corner of your Outlook.com inbox, which is being rolled out to all users “in the next few weeks.” You can switch back to the regular web experience at any time (just hit the toggle again), so trying the beta shouldn’t be too much of a pain as it seems to be well integrated to the current platform.
As of Now, Outlook.com Beta brings three improvements:
• A faster experience: A more responsive web development framework means quicker loading, an upgraded search feature, a fresher look with a modern conversation style, and a new design to let you see, read, and attach files faster.
• Better personalization: You can personalize your inbox with your favorite people and folders, as well as give your communications a personal touch with an easier way to access tons of expressions, including popular emojis and GIFs.
• A smarter inbox: Your inbox now shows you Quick Suggestions (such as restaurants, flights, or your favorite teams’ schedules) as you type, an improved photo experience puts all your sent or received pictures in one place and makes it easier to share them, and a modern conversation style makes it easier to manage and preview photos and attachments.
“Additional enhancements” are in the pipeline, which are set to be rolled out over the next few months, including updates to calendar and people.
The company promises to iterate, improve, refine, or discard Outlook.com beta features based on user feedback. The best innovations will be brought into Outlook.com “at the end of the beta,” though the company did not specify how long the beta will last.