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Microsoft Brings Outlook Back to Macs

Gordon Kelly


Microsoft Brings Outlook Back to Macs

I need to be careful here...

Microsoft has built on the Nokia/Office Suite partnership yesterday with the announcement it will be bring back Outlook on the Mac. The software had been dumped more than 10 years ago and replaced by 'lite' alternative Entourage.

Now 'Outlook for Mac' is back and it will replace Entourage when it launches in 2010 (the extended arrival notice is no doubt to let snail-like corporates get their geriatric IT departments on board). It is built from the ground up using Apple's Cocoa and will be a fully blown version of Outlook to mirror Outlook 2010 on the PC.

"It is an exciting time for the MacBU {Microsoft Macintosh Business Unit} with updates to our current products and the first public announcement about the next version of Office for Mac. For several years we have focused on providing the best Microsoft Exchange client for the Mac, and the Web Services Edition delivers that today for Entourage users," said Eric Wilfrid, general manager for the MacBU at Microsoft. "Outlook for Mac will bring features our customers have long requested - such as Rights Management - that make working across platforms even easier. I think people will see that this move to Outlook for Mac is more than just a name change."

Now the being careful bit. After seven years of using Outlook on a PC I eventually dropped it to try a Cloud based existence through Google Apps and I would be lying if I didn't admit the portability, speed, offline Google Gears access, OTA handset syncing and £0 RRP didn't make it the best technological decision I've possibly ever made a good choice. .PST and .mBox files may you never, ever re-enter my life.

Anyway, horses for courses, so back to Microsoft Office and a reminder that Office 2008 for Mac Business Edition and Home and Student Edition retail for £439.99 and £119.99 respectively. Yes it's a lot of money, but at least a new edition of Entourage - the Web Services Edition - is now available with support for the latest version of Exchange Server. Makes it all worth it.


Entourage Web Services Edition

Office 2008 for Mac

PS I do love Microsoft Word!

Tony Walker

August 14, 2009, 10:22 am

I'm glad someone hates it with the same passion as me. Didn't like it when I used it "free" (MSDN sub) and ran screaming into the arms of Mozilla then Thunderbird. Hated it when forced to twice at work for two major companies. Have been using a Mac for my e-mail requirements for a number of years now. The included client is more than adequate. Don't Apple support using that with Exchange now - maybe that's what has prompted MS into action.

And indeed, don't get *me* started on Word! Manually hex editing a file is easier.

prag fest

August 14, 2009, 1:29 pm

What great news, with a bit of luck they'll release an iPhone version of Win Mobile 6 too.


August 14, 2009, 1:31 pm

This is brilliant news, IMHO, and may well help Apple's case in corporate environments. Not that their warranties or anything else help them in that area, but this is important none the less.


August 14, 2009, 1:38 pm

I have to use Outlook at work... How I hate it. Why corporations are so into using MS products I don't know.


August 14, 2009, 2:09 pm

Outlook, I love it. Can't understand why some of you can't use it. A bit complicated I assume for none-techy folks.

Having all my data stored on my drive is just brilliant. Cloud be damned.


August 14, 2009, 3:25 pm

Can't wait for Outlook 2010. Have seriously tried to like Entourage but it's always been Outlook's younger, dumber brother.

Now, if Outlook 2010 for Mac were to have all the features of it's Windows cousin, and had the features of PostBox and Xobni also rolled in, that would be sweet.


August 14, 2009, 3:33 pm


Because the main alternative to Outlook/Exchange in the enterprise is IBM's Lotus Notes... which I'm sure violates all kinds of laws on human rights.


August 14, 2009, 4:42 pm

Outlook remains by far the best corporate e-mail solution. Cloud computing is fine if you don't need to be linked into a secure corporate network otherwise it's largely useless athe moment.

For those of you who don't understand why companies use MS products it's quite simple really: They really do just work, they connect with everything that matters and they're universal.


August 14, 2009, 5:15 pm


Please lets not talk about Lotus Notes! I have no idea why companies buy a microsoft suite then use Lotus Notes!


August 14, 2009, 6:36 pm

Actually, I don't have any major problems with the newer versions Outlook. It might have a somewhat boring 'corporate' facade, but it's a very capable piece of software. I'm sure once MS have overhauled it for Office 2010 more people will warm to it.

I'll also admit that GMail is a fantastic system. I use Outlook as my home e-mail client for Google Apps and I use the GMail web client when out & about. If you connect Outlook to GMail via IMAP then all of your mail is still stored in the 'cloud' (I *hate* that term), so PST files become redundant. Seems like the best of both worlds to me...


August 14, 2009, 7:46 pm

@Chris in a sense, but that model is also like saying: when I am at work I drive a Mercedes, then I go home and drive a BMW which I clamp to the roof rack of my Mercedes and when I am out and about I drive my BMW...


August 14, 2009, 8:28 pm

@Gordon: Heh, I can see how it might sound like that. Just to be clear, I'd rather use Outlook wherever I am, but when that's not an option I've got the highly capable Gmail client instead. So maybe my BMW can't drive in Buckinghamshire, but my Mercedes can or something like that ;)

I suppose my point is just that native clients and cloud computing needn't be mutually exclusive, there's benefits to both.


August 14, 2009, 9:44 pm

I'm one of those people who works for an employer who has Microsoft Office (2000) but uses Lotus Notes as it's e-mail and calendar software! That really is quite astonisting, when the far superior and user friendly Outlook comes with Office for free!

I have to say that Lotus Notes is probably the worst 'mainstream' software that I have ever used. Nothing that MS has produced is so un-user friendly, crashes that frequently...sorry I'll have to stop there as my blood is starting boil. Still, it keeps our IT people gamefully employed and busy, when it nessessitates regular total profile rebuild! Lotus Notes sucks...

Take a look at www.lotusnotessucks.com/

I'm just thankful that I use the excellent Outlook (2003) at home. It's been a faithful servent over the past six years, so I won't even be upgrading to a newer version, unless MS force me to! The same goes for the rest of Office 2003.


August 14, 2009, 10:05 pm

"I'm one of those people who works for an employer who has Microsoft Office (2000) but uses Lotus Notes as it's e-mail and calendar software! That really is quite astonisting, when the far superior and user friendly Outlook comes with Office for free!"

Actually, that's not the full story. Although Outlook is free with Office, the licenses to use Exchange (the CAL) and the exchange server licenses are not. They are the major cost, not Outlook. Further, moving from email system to email system can be very complex and costly, especially if your business uses Notes as a database and workflow system, which Exchange cannot do.


August 16, 2009, 2:44 am

scotw, you are right to say that Outlook licences use MS Exchange, but it's also true that Outlook can quite easily use IBMs Domino server as Notes users are forced to do. I believe it's the ancient Domino server that is adding to our problems. My employers did use Notes as a workflow solution and even used it as a database and web editing solution too! Thankfully, at least the last part has changed and the resulting web site is generally considered as a vast improvement!

I will grudgingly admit that Notes has improved with each release (we now use 6.5), IMO, but I still think it's way short of the 'standard' opposition for it's main client tasks.

If most businesses choose Outlook, then one must assume that there is are alternative database and workflow solutions?

I can't believe that my employers IT department had the foresight to consider all the options, especially, when you consider that we still use Windows 2000, Office 2000 and approx 98% of our monitors are still 17in CRTs complete with CRT flicker (unless you know how to increase the refresh rate - and 95% of employees don't)! If you have a desktop less than five years old, you are in a tiny minority! Don't anyone suggest our public services are awash with lots of money! We're not in local government! Central government and civil service maybe...?

Tony Walker

August 16, 2009, 7:29 am

We used Novell's Groupwise before Outlook - we were forced to change when our large mail order company were taken over by a smaller outfit (with backers with deep pockets) and they gave them (!!) responsibility for all IT which led them to ditch our Mainframe and make 16 of us redundant. Bitter?

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