Microsoft recently added a new app launcher to Office 365, allowing for more organization and personalization. It now seems that they are testing it for Outlook.com services as well. Instead of the dropdown bar accessed by an arrow on the upper left hand corner, the app launcher is a square that pop opens a small window.
Personally, I think it makes sense to have the same interface. Not only would two unique interfaces not be intuitive, but customization is the one thing the Outlook.com navigation bar was lacking — and perhaps the one place Google’s app launcher had an advantage.
Currently, you navigate between services via a black bar with that has icons for pre-determined services, when more familiar users may already have a personalized workflow. For example, I don’t use the Word or Excel web apps as I use the desktop versions. Removing them would be useful for me, as I could then switch between the services I do use much more quickly.
None of the staff have been able to use the new launcher as of yet, and the only response Neowin received from Microsoft was “We’re always testing new ways to engage our users across our services.”
You can watch the Office 365 app launcher to see what we think Outlook.com will also receive.