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The new Microsoft Office 365 is actually worth a second look

Microsoft has had some hits and misses, but the new Microsoft Office 365 might be a hit – time for a second look.

office 365

office 365

Microsoft Office 365 might be a hit

Last month, Microsoft rolled out a bundle of updates for their web version of Outlook for Office 365 that, according to Microsoft’s blog, promises to “deliver the richest email and calendar experience on the web.” The updates should be especially helpful for those who frequently use Outlook on their mobile devices, as Microsoft has worked to improve the user interface for smartphones.

Most of the updates are improvements to make Outlook’s user interface more efficient and easier on the eyes. Email subject lines come in a larger font, and messages are indented to make them easier to read. An “action bar” keeps the tools and commands you most commonly use on hand, regardless of whether you are working with your Mail, Calendar, People, or Tasks.

Big huge changes to the Calendar

There are a number of improvements to Outlook’s Calendar. Buttons are more prominent and easier to find, making it a snap to create new events and navigate the calendar.

The Calendar now includes daily weather forecasts. You can also add “charms’ or small visual icons to indicate different types of events. A calendar of holidays and birthdays can be viewed separately, or overlaid onto your regular calendar.

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Email just got a hell of a lot better

Outlook has also improved its email inbox so that you can view a list of emails, each as a single line with a short preview of the message in line with the subject. Clicking on a message now opens in the message in the same window, rather than in a pop up.

Also in your email, you can now highlight important messages and “pin” them to the top of your inbox. You can also manage all of your emails from the same sender in one “sweep” – a great way to manage regular messages like newsletters or offers from your favorite companies, the kind of recurring messages that tend to clutter up your inbox. Using “sweep,” you can specify a number of days to keep messages, keep only the most recent message, or delete all the messages from one sender. It’s a quick and easy way to tidy up your inbox.

It’s easier than ever to make your emails visually engaging and fun. You can now easily add, resize, and rotate images; you can also add shadow effects and borders. Plus there’s a whole new package of emojis to choose from.

These are just a few of the many improvements to the Outlook experience. To read more about the changes, check out Microsoft’s blog.

#Office365

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Ellen Vessels, a Staff Writer at The American Genius, is respected for their wide range of work, with a focus on generational marketing and business trends. Ellen is also a performance artist when not writing, and has a passion for sustainability, social justice, and the arts.

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