Microsoft launched Outlook for iOS and Android devices back in January, promising a regular schedule of application updates. The company has kept that promise, bringing additional features to the mail client this week on both platforms that make a good app even better.
Gone is the limited contacts view, which is now replaced by a more robust People view that acts like a full address book. Each contact has action buttons to quickly send mail, to place a call or to find their location on a map. The Android version in particular acts like a universal address book, pulling in locally stored contact data from other apps. Enterprises will also appreciate the new Global Address List support.
After the update, Outlook's calendar will look better on large screen devices thanks to a new three-day view in landscape mode. Cancelled meetings can now be removed from Outlook, instead of wasting space and attention. Search in Outlook is more useful thanks to highlighted results, which make relevant messages stand out. And lastly, a new Select All option -- now in iOS, coming soon to Android -- helps for bulk editing or message deletion.
Although Microsoft didn't quite build the mobile version of Outlook on its own -- it bought Acompli's platform in late 2014 -- the company is starting to put its own stamp on the app.
And by doing so, Microsoft is making the software more compelling to use, both for work and personal use. The more users Microsoft can gather through its mobile apps and services, the better chance it has to sell additional software products on other platforms as it waits for its Lumia hardware business to pick up steam.