Microsoft to Improve Gmail Support in Mail and Calendar for Windows 10

Posted on April 22, 2017 by Paul Thurrott in Cloud, Windows 10 with 11 Comments

Microsoft to Improve Gmail Support in Mail and Calendar for Windows 10

Microsoft has announced that the Mail and Calendar apps in Windows 10 will be updated with enhanced support for Gmail and Google Calendar.

“Over the past year we’ve introduced many new features in Windows 10 Mail and Calendar apps for users with Outlook.com accounts,” Microsoft product marketing manager Vivek Kumar notes in a new post to the Windows Experience blog. “We’re now excited to bring these features to our users with Gmail accounts, so you can enjoy the best of what Windows 10 Mail and Calendar have to offer.”

Microsoft delivered a major update to these apps back in February, adding Focused Inbox, @mentions, richer experiences for travel reservations and package deliveries, and several other new features. But as Mr. Kumar explains, they were only available to those with Outlook.com (really, Microsoft accounts) or Office 365 accounts.

But time marches ever on. And now Microsoft is doing the work to bring these features to those who use Gmail and Google Calendar as well. New versions of the Mail and Calendar apps will begin rolling out to a select group of testers in the Fast ring of the Windows 10 Insider Preview “over the next several weeks.” So these new app versions and capabilities should head out to others–others in the Fast ring, and then those in the Slow ring or on the production versions of Windows 10—after that.

There is one weird bit, however.

Instead of natively supporting Gmail-type accounts, Microsoft requires users to sync a copy of their email, calendar, and contacts to the “Microsoft Cloud” in order to access these new features. “This will allow new features to light up, and changes to update back and forth with Gmail—such as creation, edit or deletion of emails, calendar events, and contacts,” Kumar writes. “But your experience in Gmail.com or apps from Google will not change in any way.”

 

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