Microsoft Will Release a Dark Mode for Outlook.com

Posted on July 5, 2018 by Paul Thurrott in Outlook.com with 8 Comments

In a support forum post, Microsoft said that it will finally release a Dark Mode for Outlook.com. Someday.

“We’ve been working on Dark Mode for a few months now and you can expect this in the product soon,” a Microsoftie identified only as Philip wrote in response to a request for this feature. “One reason for the delay is our insistence that we deliver the best Dark Mode of any leading email client (you’ll understand when you see it, I guarantee).”

Many will find that last statement somewhat ironic given that Microsoft is now delivering the worst-imaginable Dark Mode experience of any leading desktop operating system, in Windows 10. But we can also look to last Halloween’s “sneak preview” of an Outlook.com Dark Mode to further question this assertion. That preview wasn’t all that impressive either.

“The sneak preview you saw last year at Halloween was a prototype that required a lot more work to be ready for prime time,” Philip explains. “We’ve redesigned the colors and code multiple times and are proud to enter the final stretch.”

Whether this Dark Mode or something like it comes to Microsoft’s many other Outlook clients—like Outlook on the Web and Outlook mobile for Android and iOS—is unclear. But Outlook 2016 for Mac and Windows—and Mail, Calendar, and People in Windows 10, which are a sort of Outlook client too—already support this kind of functionality and long have.

Also, the word “delay” is interesting. I’m wondering now if Microsoft didn’t originally expect to include Dark Mode in the recent Outlook.com refresh.

 

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Comments (8)

8 responses to “Microsoft Will Release a Dark Mode for Outlook.com”

  1. Usman

    I don't think they expected to do a dark mode originally. However I believe they're settling on a uniform dark mode for Office fabric / fluent Web. The css framework is being used across all online productivity tools (VSTS, Outlook, office online). Would make sense for them to nail it in once and use it across the board. I wouldn't be surprised if the dark colour is more of a dark grey like the Skype apps.

  2. Martin Sjöholm

    The outlook.com beta is just terrible. Practically unusable on Firefox. I have not seen such a badly executed revision for very long. I guess that's why it's still in beta. Where it should stay indefinitely.


    So many things irritate me, but this is one of the worst: The neat functionality of saving an appointment to another calendar is no longer there in the beta. Why? I have several calendars and since some scenarios require me to use the desktop outlook app, I have some appointments saved to the wrong calendar. In the non-beta version of outlook.com I can then open the appointment, edit the details and select another calendar. Gone in the beta.


    Actually I find the native iOS calendar much easier to use, which is why I am gradually abandoning outlook.com. Is that their strategy?

  3. euskalzabe

    About time, although it doesn't really look very good...

  4. nordyj

    I'll take it. I prefer using dark modes, and use them in any apps that support it. Can't wait to try it!

  5. whgb

    Can we have a dark mode for thurrott.com, please?

  6. CaedenV

    The best thing about Outlook.com is that it works with just about any app out there. You never need to look at the terrible UI design choices when you can use it 100 other ways.

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