Toward the end of last week, Microsoft announced its plans to retire Mail and Calendar apps in Windows in favor of the new Outlook for Windows. The company further indicated that the change was set to take place in September 2024.
The timeline for this change perfectly aligns with when Microsoft could possibly be launching Windows 12. As such, the operating system is much more likely to ship with the pre-installed and set as the default email client.
However, the company quietly retracted the announcement a few days later, updating the timeline and citing that it is currently “reevaluating the timing and implementation” of the change and that it would furnish users with updated information accordingly.
Now, once again, the company has updated the announcement on its Microsoft 365 admin center and indicated that the change will be implemented by the end of 2024. Oddly, a segment part of the announcement cites that users with a Microsoft 365 or Office 365 subscription with access to the Microsoft 365 desktop apps will be able to access the new Outlook for Windows app, but those with access to the Microsoft 365 desktop apps but don’t have these subscriptions will have to manage their email and calendar in Outlook on the web.
Our Managing Editor, Kip Kniskern has since reached out to Microsoft’s PR team but is yet to get a response.
So they changed "September 2024" to "(b)y the end of the year," and let me give the second part a shot: users with a Microsoft (work or school??) account but not a subscription won't be able to use the desktop app. – Does that sound right?
— Kip OnMSFT (@kipkniskern) June 20, 2023
To this end, we’re yet to establish why Microsoft has updated the rollout time for this change numerously in the past week. Perhaps, it could’ve been prompted by feedback from the users or the company could be gearing up to ship its next major OS.
As we edge closer to this timeline, users will start noticing subtle changes in the platform’s UI such as a MailTip in the Mail and Calendar apps. And as you might already be aware, the new Outlook for Windows app ships with third-party account support.