Outlook for Mac and iOS

I use Mail.app on Mac and iOS for my two personal email accounts.

For my 3 work email accounts, all in Microsoft, I use the web interface for Outlook, which is a pain as I have to sign in/sign out of my different accounts. On iOS I use the Outlook app for my work accounts.

I’m thinking about installing the Outlook app for Mac and keep my work accounts in that as well. The reason for that is that I can quit the Outlook app after work and not see any notifications, but I will still go into Mail.app to check my personal email in the evening, which is why I don’t want my work accounts in mail.app.
Is the Outlook app for Mac any good?

I was also wondering, if anyone could help me create some sort of notification system where the Outlook app for Mac would shut down automatically and I would not get ANY notifications from my work email accounts after 5 pm?
I think such a workflow might be possible with Alfred: to automatically have Outlook for Mac start up in the morning at 7 am and shut down at 5 pm and not start up in the weekends. If it is not possible with Alfred, does anyone know of another app to do that in?

Is it possible in iOS to have notifications silenced in a specific app, Outlook for iOS, between certain times of day and on certain days (after 5 pm and weekends)?

Thanks :blush:

You can have Keyboard Maestro automatically start and quit applications and specific times - I find this quite useful though I’ve never tried it with Alfred.

Some iOS apps will let you specify when you want notifications, I don’t think Outlook is one unfortunately. This is one reason I like Airmail - I can say that for account X I want notifications at Y location or between times A and B.

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Alright thanks. I’m not going down the route of Keyboard Maestro. I know that it’s a fantastic app, but I will be yet one of those apps that I shell out cash for only to completely underuse its capabilities.

I’m also pretty sure that an Alfred workflow will do this, I will try and get on that.

Thanks for the heads up on Airmail. I might look into that. I have tried Airmail previously. I couldn’t justify the cost and kind of like Mail.app to be honest. I also use Mailbutler in Mail.app and it’s a perfect match for my very light use of email.

But I will take it all into consideration :blush:

Alfred doesn’t really do scheduled tasks natively. I’d recommend Linton if you don’t want to work with launchd directly.

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Okay thank you… I will look into it maybe :blush:

Is the Outlook app for Mac any good?

I think Outlook for Mac is a fantastic email client, and I certainly am happy with the expanded functionality that MS are adding into it with each iteration of updates on O365. For me, and after having gone through a number of email clients, it’s the one I’ve settled on. I have a similar setup to the one you are trying to a achieve, with my work email on Outlook and personal emails on mail.app

My 2nd favorite Mac email client is Airmail, it’s a great client. My beef with Airmail is that the attachments tend to go to the bottom of the email chain and you have to go through a (un)healthy scrolling exercise every time you want to find an attachment.

Although not your question, but I’ve gone down the route of suppressing email notifications all together based on advice I’ve seen on Asian Efficiency, in order to eliminate distractions. Email client open or not, I recommend you try this.

Outlook is great, I use it as the main client on iPad and Mac. I use it for personal and work emails.

I have a recommendation for you, do not overburden yourself with workflows before seeing if Outlook is actually for you or not. You might find out that Outlook is not the best client. So do not invest time upfront.

Just use Alfred to start Outlook, that will take 1 second from you, and (CMD+Q) to quit which is another second. So by end of month of testing you already invested 1 minute of time to test Outlook.

If it works, then find out if you can automate the process.

Also about iOS, you can’t unfortunately customize notification based on time.

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It’s a drag about iOS, so it sort of defeats the whole process about using outlook for work if I get emails in the evening and look at my phone. It might not be possible in the iOS Outlook app, but doesn’t iOS12 allow for really custom and granular notification settings?

You’re right about Alfred and just quitting Outlook. But it would be cooler to have it done automatically.

Otherwise I could switch entirely to Airmail for Mac and iOS and have them snooze my work accounts at specific time like @RosemaryOrchard suggested. That might be the best way here.

I was able to have the behaviour of my Mac automatically (gracefully) quitting Microsoft Outlook at 17:00.
The solution is based on launchd and a small AppleScript.
You could tweak it from here-on.

Step 1:
Create an AppleScript with the content:
tell application "Microsoft Outlook" to quit
Save the script as:

Step 2:
go to the folder
create a textfile with the content below (don’t forget to change to your own username).
Save the textfile as:

<?xml version="1.0" encoding="UTF-8"?>
<!DOCTYPE plist PUBLIC "-//Apple//DTD PLIST 1.0//EN" "http://www.apple.com/DTDs/PropertyList-1.0.dtd">
<plist version="1.0">
    </dict>	<key>ProgramArguments</key>

Step 3:
run the following commands in the Terminal:

launchctl load ~/Library/LaunchAgents/org.mpu.quitOutlook.plist
launchctl start org.mpu.quitOutlook.plist

Wow thank you! Certainly cheaper than spending money on AirMail :grinning:

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I’ve not used them on Mac, but have used both Outlook and Airmail on iPhone and agree with the annoyance of attachments going to the bottom in Airmail. One other problem I have is that Airmail will only allow you to act on an entire conversation thread, whereas Outlook will allow you to act on an individual message. Both are good options, but I’ve settled on Outlook.


I used Outlook on my Mac for almost two months when the company flipped some switches that prevent Apple Mail from connecting to Office 365. I was initially pretty happy with it until I started to search for old messages. The overriding reason that I use Apple Mail is its search functionality. I can usually find any message I need within 5 seconds in Apple Mail, even if I haven’t opened that message in 2 years.

I find Outlook’s search to be unusable. I can’t tell you how many times I have been looking at a message in my inbox and then searched for the sender of that message only to have that message missing from the search results. I could never really trust the search results after that.

If you are an organized person who files things and does not rely much on searching to find messages then you will probably like Outlook a lot. It has categories and different colored flags so you can organize things. You can make subfolders, of course. If your primary workflow is to search for messages, you may end up frustrated like me.

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Enhancing search
Have you considered using HoudahSpot for searching Outlook email?
Outlook is making all email messages accessible to Spotlight, and HoudahSpot to me has always been ‘Spotlight on steroïds’ :grinning:.

Another tool which could be used is DEVONthink Office Pro (also often mentioned on the forum). Though it is quite an investment, it has excellent search options.

Accessing 365 as IMAP
Another options is to ask your tech department whether it is possible to access your 365 e-mail by IMAP, which would reenable using OSX Mail for you.

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I use Outlook for the Mac from my Office 365 subscription. I retry it periodically on my iOS devices but it won’t let me move in messages between accounts.

I keep a work account, my main Gmail/personal/Consulting account, my historical Gmail account which is now my giveaway email address, and an account for Scouting.

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