Microsoft Brings Outlook Email App to the Apple Watch

Outlook for Apple Watch
Image © Microsoft.

Aug 10, 2015

In January end this year, Microsoft had made available Outlook for iOS and a preview of Outlook for Android. These Outlook apps are designed to work with Office 365, Exchange, Outlook.com, Gmail and other email providers. Now, since the past week, the giant is offering a new Outlook email app for the Apple Watch. This latest update enables users to access full mails via their wearable device.

The Updated Outlook for iOS App

The updated Outlook for iOS app includes several improved features. Notifications from Outlook on the Apple Watch now display much more than just a couple of sentences. Users still cannot directly reply from a notification. However, they can tap on the Outlook icon to access a dedicated Outlook Apple Watch app, which allows them to see the mail and also reply to the same.

While Microsoft primarily focuses on promoting its own wearable, the Microsoft Band, it has also been equally interested to support the Apple Watch and Android Wear. The company is already offering apps such as OneDrive, OneNote, PowerPoint, Skype and so on for both Apple’s and Google’s smartwatches.

This strategy is obviously a logical extension of the company’s main aim of expanding the spectrum of its services beyond just the Windows platform.

Incidentally, Microsoft has additionally created a dedicated wearables Website, which lists its Office apps for the Apple Watch and Android Wear as well. As per Microsoft’s statement, the latest version of the Outlook app for the Apple Watch offers the following key features:

  • Gives users a quick glance of their Outlook Inbox and calendar, by swiping up from the Watch’s face.
  • Enables users to view unread email and post replies from within the app. Users can also avail preset replies, which are already pre-written and ready for use. Voice dictation is another important feature.
  • Allows users the ability to customize notifications as per their wish. They can choose to receive notifications immediately, reply to important emails, archive emails or even schedule them to reply at a later time.

How the Update Benefits the Apple Watch

The updated app is beneficial for the Apple Watch as well. Contrary to company reports, the wearable device is believed to be performing below par in the market. In the given scenario, it will be good for the company to add on to its existing list of apps.

Apple CEO, Tim Cook, had stated in July this year, that the smartwatch supports about 8,500 apps. However, the company aims at creating apps which can work independently on the wearable device, without the user having to pair it with their iPhone. The fruity giant is already trying to achieve this goal with version 2.0 of its watchOS.