Difference Between Outlook.com Mail and the Mail App

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  1. 45RPM's Avatar
    Posts : 5
    windows 10

    Difference Between Outlook.com Mail and the Mail App


    Can someone please tell me the difference between the two mail applications.

    Both facilities seem to do the same thing albeit under a different wrapper. Well thatís the way I see it.
    At present, I am using Windows Live Mail.

    I have POP3 accounts from 3rd party provider, Gmail and outlook.com accounts. So I wish to manage all my emails under one facility. I am hoping to switch away from this outdated WLM.

    I looked at (1) Outlook.com (I access it via MSN), (2) the MS Mail app and (3) the Gmail interface.
    Gmail seems too complicated. So that leaves my options 1 and 2.

    What I donít understand is, why MS should offer two facilities to achieve the same outcome.
    Can you explain why someone would use one in preference to the other.

    Last edited by 45RPM; 28 Sep 2017 at 10:07. Reason: add extra info
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  2. Caledon Ken's Avatar
    Posts : 24,230
    Windows 10 Pro x64 Version 2004

    Hi 45RPM. Welcome to the TenForums @45RPM

    I take a kick at this and others can point out my short comings. When I say Outlook I mean the outlook app and not outlook.com access through browser unless I stated that. (Of course you have to ask why MS decided to call everything Outlookish, but that is another different sad story.)

    Windows 10 mail was written for a Windows OS. (8 - 10) You can access People or Calendar but that opens separate Windows apps on computer much as it does when you access outlook.com on a browser. You have to have an app to be cool these days.

    Now lots of people have an Android or IOS phone and these Windows 10 apps just don't run. Not wanting users to only access their mail through the Apple mail app or the default Android mail app Microsoft needed to compete so the developed the Outlook app. (Of course there is the Yahoo mail app or the Gmail app. The Yahoo app works on 10 I don't think Gmail is there yet).

    As a matter of fact with iOS 11.0.0 Apple mail couldn't send through outlook.com domains and the quick fix was get the outlook app for iOS. This has been fixed with iOS 11.0.1.

    Now if you want to provide users with a consistent view (Windows, iOS, Android) the Outlook app needed to run on Windows 10 and its available in Store.

    All this said and its been a while since I've tried, you couldn't actually update contact info in the Outlook app and have it appear on Outlook.com (browser view). This meant it doesn't sync across devices. Maybe this feature has been added. Same for calendar.

    I should add, maybe I just wasn't smart enough to make it work.

    To update calendar or people you needed to go to those apps on IOS, Android to have the update sync. Maybe this works on 10 or maybe the Outlook app opens the people / calendar app in Windows 10 just like Windows 10 mail.

    Not sure if I've muddy the waters and help any. Pretty much any app can have many accounts. It is how the app works, what keys do what and how it syncs that matters.

    The Windows 10 mail app, with it corresponding People an Calendar app do a good job but everyone is different and the smallest thing can put someone off.

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  3. Posts : 150
    Windows 10 Home v2004

    Ken, you'ld made a good start. Here's my take:

    Original History: Before Windows 8 -- the tablet O/S monstrosity, everyone obtained their email in 1 of 2 ways:
    1. Either, they viewed it from the ISP's web page in a browser, with no way to store anything locally. This is the Outlook.com view.
    2. Or, they used an email client program to download the messages and view them off-line. For MS users, this used to be the included Windows Live Mail or its predecessors (now semi-extinct); otherwise, it is Thunderbird, eMail Client, etc.

    But, Windows 8's "tablet first" mentality demanded a more visual and tactile Mail application, since email is a primary use of tablets. So, they created the included Mail & Calendar app, which evolved (only slightly) into the same in Windows 10.

    It contains the worst of both original techniques: It simply is a confusing, difficult touch-screen interface to interact with Outlook.com or other IMAP/POP ISPs, with no capability to permanently store anything off-line.

    The only reason I use it, at all, is that it's easy to mark large volumes of messages for deletion, without deleting the entire folder contents.

    Its counterpart, the Calendar program, is a bit handier. Unlike Office Outlook 2016 / 365, where I can only create or edit my own calendar, I can create and edit events in any of my shared Outlook.com calendars. This is so dumb a limitation that I can't even maintain my brand-spanking new Outlook.com shared family calendar in Office Outlook! I have to go to Outlook.com for most of that work.

    So, what's my recommendation for 45RPM? His options are:
    1. Stick with WLM, which only synchs with Outlook.com for email, not calendars, etc.
    2. Obtain an off-line email client, like Office Outlook or eMail Client. (See limitations above)
    3. Stick with W10 Mail. This will also let you create an integrated Inbox, from all your accounts, but you can't store those messages easily
    4. Just go to any of your ISP email accounts, and see if you can configure for an integrated Inbox

    As always, your mileage may vary.
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  4. Caledon Ken's Avatar
    Posts : 24,230
    Windows 10 Pro x64 Version 2004

    I like description but not Option 1.

    WLM is not supported and as security tightens at ISP's it just won't work. On top of that, and I can't pull one up, I'm sure I seen threads that on a clean install of 1703 you can't even install WLM. You cannot get code from MS as I understand the downloads have been pulled. Time to move on while you still have a working product.

    When I'm dealing with people I usually tie in the phone / tablet conversation. I want my mail everywhere and I want to be able to update calendars and contacts in one place and see them everywhere.

    Let's see where 45RPM is heading.
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  5. Posts : 1,963
    Windows 10

    WLM is not an option it's no longer supported.

    eM Client, for free only 2 Accounts, you have to pay for more than that.

    The Windows 10 Mail App (2) does have it's limitations, but you do get a consistent interface for all Mail Accounts.
    The advantages are the instant access to a number of accounts at the same time with a consistent interface.

    You can still use the Webmail interface (1) for each Mail Account indeed you have to, to configure some new usually unwanted "feature".
    It's in addition to, not instead of the Web Mail interface (1).

    I moved from POP3 accounts to IMAP a few years ago it's the way things are going.
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  6. Caledon Ken's Avatar
    Posts : 24,230
    Windows 10 Pro x64 Version 2004

    and the really nice thing about IMAP, at least I think it is, if I delete an email on my tablet or PC or phone it is deleted everywhere.
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  7. 45RPM's Avatar
    Posts : 5
    windows 10
    Thread Starter

    Hello everyone and thank you all for your replies.
    I do like your friendly and honest approach(es).
    Ken Ė interesting what you say about Outlookish. Apart from being daft, it makes searching (eg this forum) awkward.
    Gpstoloff, you mentioned Thundebird. I am tempted by this option. This seems a well-respected provider. I like the idea of downloading mail to my PC with the backup left on the original server just in case. Any thoughts ??
    I know Iím a dinosaur but I am not a fan of IMAP. I tried it before and it seemed to create excess default servers when using several emails.
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  8. Caledon Ken's Avatar
    Posts : 24,230
    Windows 10 Pro x64 Version 2004

    For me IMAP works. Not sure what you mean excess default servers.

    I use Thunderbird and its quite reliable. It gets, sends and keeps my mail synced.

    The issue with leaving all mail on server is when you have to recreate your account on machine I've seen many times where it then wants to download everything, I'm referring to POP3, so all that stuff that really wasn't worth keeping reappears.

    That and when you delete an email on phone you have to delete on Computer and tablet.

    Of course we are all different and work differently. Nice we have the choice.
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  9. lx07's Avatar
    Posts : 5,479

    The main difference between outlook.com and the mail app (apart from cosmetics) is the mail app lets you read/search your mail when you aren't connected.

    WLM might be outdated but you can install and use it if you only want email. My wife uses it and prefers it to Outlook (the program that is part of Office) that I use. As others said it is on the way out though due to new messaging protocols - it doesn't support her calendar any more.

    If you want something similar to WLM so messages are stored on your PC and will work when the internet doesn't then out of the two (outlook.com and the mail app) I'd go for mail app. It is OK and gives you notifications when things arrive and so on. You can of course use both - running mail app doesn't preclude you from using the web interface at all.

    I would seriously think about moving to IMAP also. It is easier to manage if you have more than one device and safer as some cockup (human or software) isn't going to delete all your mails quite so easily as they remain on their various servers unless you explicitly delete them.

    Personally I find Thunderbird terrible - it looks like something from 1990s. If you don't like the mail app (and want offline access), can't use WLM because of calendars then the only option I've found really is Outlook (the program) although presumably there are others.
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  10. Caledon Ken's Avatar
    Posts : 24,230
    Windows 10 Pro x64 Version 2004

    On the appearance of Thunderbird, totally agree. I can't remember a redesign, ever.
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