Outlook.com for Android review: Brighter and better than before

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The Good Outlook.com for Android looks great and has all of the basics down. Plus, it supports multiple accounts and offers an extra level of password protection.

The Bad Can't send messages from e-mail aliases. The interface looks like it was pulled straight from Windows Phone, which could be a turn-off for Android purists.

The Bottom Line This attractive app is great client for any Android user with a Microsoft e-mail account (Outlook.com or otherwise).


8.9 Overall
  • Setup 10
  • Features 9
  • Interface 8
  • Performance 9

While the previous version of Outlook.com for Android may have been a drab and dreary mess, the newest update to the app marks a significant turnaround. Now more in line with its Web-based big brother, the Outlook.com app is brighter and offers a more enjoyable e-mail experience overall.

The Outlook app's interface is made up of sharp angles, straight lines, and a wealth of white space, giving it an altogether minimalist appearance. In fact, with the gray toolbar and distinctively styled buttons at the bottom of the screen, this Outlook Android app looks very much like it belongs on a Windows Phone device. And that's not necessarily a bad thing, but it could make the app's controls seem foreign to those who are used to Android staples like the dotted menu button up top. Plus, it will probably disappoint purists who love Android's typical Holo style of app.

The Outlook app's brighter interface is more in line with that of its full-sized, Web-based counterpart. Screenshot by Jaymar Cabebe/CNET

The gray toolbar is useful, as it offers quick access to Compose, Refresh, and Search buttons when you're looking at your Inbox. And there's a sliding panel on the left, from which you can access your drafts, sent messages, and other e-mail folders.

Outlook's search function, thank goodness, has been fixed and now works the way it should. While previously it would only search for contacts, it can now scrub through the text contained in your messages as well.

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