Getting started with New Outlook

Jun 20, 2024 | Outlook Hints and Tips

New Outlook gives an improved and slicker interface than the desktop version.

It has been out for quite a year or so now.  The first release for office insiders was in September 2022 with the public preview available from April 2023.  Initially its functionality was hugely reduced compared to the desktop version of Outlook.  Slowly some of the key features are being made available as early adopters are informing Microsoft of features they would like to see.  There is however much functionality that has not yet appeared.

Here are 6 key features to be aware of with New Outlook.

Similar to the web version

The resemblance to the web version is huge so users coming from the web version of Outlook to new Outlook will transition really easily.

New Outlook image

Simplified Ribbon

The classic ribbon with the large icons mirrors that of desktop Outlook but this can be changed to a simplified ribbon where only key icons are showing with the others available from the ellipses at the end of the ribbon.  The simplified ribbon reduces the clutter and space the ribbon uses allowing more space to view emails or other outlook information.  The layout can be changed from the drop down arrow at the end of the ribbon.

Classic Ribbon

Classic Ribbon image

Simplified Ribbon

Simplified Ribbon image


The Density of the ribbon can be made Roomy, Cozy or Compact.  Compact takes up the least space and removes any images that may be visible with the other 2 options.  It allows for the most emails to be visible on the screen but is probably the least visually appealing so personal preferences will determine which option is the best for you.  It is available from the View tab on the ribbon.

Density image


These are much easier to find and access than in the desktop version by using the cog that sits at the top right hand corner of the screen.  This aligns better with other applications, many of which utilise this same icon.

Settings icon image


If you are getting bogged down with the number of emails in your inbox but some of them are distracting you because they do not need to be dealt with yet then snooze could be the ideal solution.  An email can be snoozed until later today, tomorrow, this weekend, next week or any custom date and time you choose.  It will disappear from your inbox and pop back up on the date specified.  The emails do not disappear totally but can still be found from the Snoozed folder in the Outlook list if required.  An email can be snoozed by right clicking on the email and selecting Snooze.

Snooze image


Pin allows an email to be moved to the top of the inbox list.  This is useful if you want to ensure that you do not forget to deal with it.  It is pinned by clicking on the Pin icon which appears when you hover over the email.  The pin icon goes blue.

Pin image

To unpin the pin is clicked again and the email returns to its original position in the email list.


Comparing some of these features to the original desktop version of Outlook, new Outlook is still lacking in some key functionality but is great for the basics.  The Pin and Snooze features are not available in desktop Outlook and are nice options to be able to work with.  The density is also better, with the only option in the desktop version being Tighter spacing which makes little difference in many cases.

One solution is to have both the New and desktop versions of Outlook open to get the best of both worlds but it will be interesting to see what developments are still in store going forward.

Further Reading

If you’ve enjoyed reading about New Outlook in Microsoft Outlook, there are some other blogs below that you might find useful:

Want to learn more about Microsoft Outlook? Then email to discuss how I can help or have a look at the Microsoft Outlook Courses I run.