Sunset: Microsoft to Shut Down Sunrise This Summer

Posted on May 12, 2016 by Paul Thurrott in Office 365, Mobile, iOS, Android, Office with 0 Comments

Sunset: Microsoft to Shut Down Sunrise This Summer

Microsoft this week revealed its schedule for shutting down Sunrise, the mobile app calendar it purchased in early 2015. With all relevant Sunrise functionality being made available in Outlook Mobile since the acquisition, Microsoft will shut down Sunrise on August 31, 2016.

“We’ll be removing Sunrise from the app stores in the next few days,” the Sunrise team announced Wednesday in a blog post. “On August 31st, we’ll officially shut down the app and it will stop working all together.”

Microsoft purchased Sunrise for an undisclosed sum in February 2015. (Rumors suggest the price tag was $100 million.) At the time, the firm said that the Sunrise app would remain free and would remain available for the short term, but that it had plans for “applying Sunrise’s innovations to other Microsoft apps and services.”

Over time, the software giant offered more clarity: It would pull unique Sunrise functionality into Outlook Mobile on Android and iOS and then shut down Sunrise when that work was complete. You may recall that Outlook Mobile, like Sunrise, was also an acquisition: The app previously went by the name Accompli, and the gentleman who ran that company, Jared Spataro, now runs Microsoft’s Outlook efforts.

The Sunrise app on Android

The Sunrise app on Android

True to its word, Microsoft has indeed added Sunrise features to Outlook Mobile over time. In October 2015, for example, the firm issued a major app refresh with improved visuals that were inspired by Sunrise. And at that time, it revealed that the Sunrise team had been integrated into the broader Outlook team and was working on “richer calendar experiences.” One of those richer experiences, called Calendar Apps, debuted in April.

So it’s time to shutter Sunrise. According to Microsoft, this will happen in phases. The app will disappear from the Google Play and Apple app stores “in the next few days,” but even though it will keep working, it will no longer be updated or supported going forward. So you may want to switch to Outlook Mobile—or some other calendar solution—before the August end date.

“As heartbreaking as this sounds, we’re hard at work bringing the magic of Sunrise to the Outlook apps,” the Sunrise team explains. “We’re confident you’ll be able to find our special touch there too.”


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