OutlookUservoice_icon_outlook Outlook Feedback by UserVoice

How can we improve your Desktop Outlook 2016 experience?

Include Additional theme options in order to provide a more pleasing color scheme

The provided color schemes make it very difficult to distinguish folders

426 votes
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Taylor Kaufman shared this idea  ·   ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →


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  • George Perkins commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    Provide different skins to control the look and feel of the GUI for Office and improve Outlook appearance. Publish the skin API so 3rd party developers can provide skins and allow a custom GUI to meet unique business requirements, simplified GUI, accessible GUI, form factor GUI, etc. Microsoft has only one GUI and you are trying to meet everyone's needs and consequently it fails most of our needs.

    Offering a different skin so we can choose our own GUI will enable us to make Office products meet our requirements. For example:
    -Office 2003 GUI skin
    -Office 2007/2010 GUI skin
    -Smartphone/small form factor GUI (that runs on Windows 10 desktop) skin
    -HTML5 GUI (looks exactly like the web portal GUI) skin
    -Dark GUI skin
    -Superhero GUI skin
    -High Contrast GUI skin
    -Touch GUI skin
    -Engineer GUI skin
    -Text only GUI skin

    This can't be that hard to do!

  • Tara Kozlowski commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    agreed: i use the dark grey because it is the easiest of the options on my eyes - but this new update has made the current mailbox list not easy or pleasing - but i've tried the other options, and they DEFINITELY don't work for my eyes/mind. this most recent update has made the mailbox and email panes "clunky" and not streamlined at all as well as just making it all around harsh to look at and use.

  • Peter Faber commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    It would be useful if the user could determine the overall color scheme themselves, i.e. select colors for the background etc. from a color palette (RGB).

  • Anonymous commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    When working in outlook, I'm confused as to which account I'm in. If I could make one account have a white theme and one have a black theme it would be easier to navigate.

  • Neville White commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    Totally agree with this suggestion - and indeed I have logged on to make the same suggestion. We (as a Company) used the previous Microsoft Office email software (when we were using Windows 7 - we are now on Windows 10) and the previous version was exactly right. So please carry over the old style. So much easier on the eye, so much better contrast, and so much less eye strain trying to read emails.

  • SB commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    Provide ability to change the color of reading pane. The default white is too harsh on the eyes. I don't want to change the OS theme color to do this and go completely dark.

  • Tango Charlie commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    PLEASE, PLEASE, PLEASE add a little "warmth" to Outlook. This "Blue on Gray on More Gray on White" theme is SO. FREAKING. HARSH.

    The blue a.k.a. "Word" colored icon sucks, too.

    **digs up copy of Office 2003**

  • Lisa Mellone commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    OUTLOOK SHOULD LOOK LIKE THE OLD VERSION!! Change for the sake of change and to justify your overpaid designer salaries is NOT good change. Just ask the every day office worker - end user. For Pete's Sake! You need more X-Generation people on your focus group panels. We're still here and will have to work a long time to support the aging baby boomers.

  • AdminOutlook 2016 UV Support (User Researcher, Outlook.com) commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    j'aimerais pouvoir changer les couleurs du theme

    j’aimerais pouvoir changer les couleurs du thème. Les couleurs que j’utilise pour le calendrier ou les tâches ont changé dans la nouvelle version d’outlook, je les trouve moins tranchées et elles ne correspondent plus à mes choix de lisibilité, les nuances sont parfois très proches. J’aimerais qu’il y ait plus de nuances.

  • Anonymous commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    I wish I could change the colors of the theme. The colors I use for the calendar or tasks have changed in the new version of Outlook, I find them less trenched and they no longer correspond to my choices of readability, the nuances are sometimes very close. I wish there were more nuances.

  • Anonymous commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    Also, you could make Outlook look like the old version. Aesthetically it is was WAY better. Anyone with two eyeballs could agree

  • Anonymous commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    The lack of ability to change the colors is definitely horrible. I recently was switched to the newer "Outlook Experience" and it's the worst ever. Second week working with it and I have tried to customize and change as much as I could to make it easier on the eyes, but to no avail. The dark grey theme is too dark, the black is just ridiculous, and white and colorful are both way too bright that it hurts my eyes! I'm miserable every day at work having to work with this.

  • Chris Nau commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    Dear Microsoft Developers, release date for Office 2016 was 3 years ago. And from the the very beginning there was a massive criticism about your design decision. In my company we are currently migrating from MSO2013 to MSO2016 and there is literally not a single co-worker (even not in the IT-Department), who is happy with the color schemes in MSO2016. Don't you think it's about time to listen to your customers and to change your attitude, that you know better then the people which are actually working with your product? So, please, give us back the freedom to choose the color schemes we think are the best for us! Best regards, a (still) faithful user.

  • Carl P. commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    Current themes are very tough to see - need to provide a way to customize the theme for the user.

  • Mark Meahl commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    I think the calendar should have different color backgrounds for different months or at least have two colors so as you move from month to month it is easy to distinguish which month you are in

  • ShelLuser commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    I recently got myself a new PC powered by Windows 10 and also wanted an Office environment so ended up with Office 2016 (which was affordable, I'm not interested in a subscription model).

    While I enjoy working with Word and Excel I plain out came to dislike Outlook with a passion, switched to Thunderbird because Outlook gave me headaches! I have my message contents shown below the message headers and because of the braindead theme it's become impossible to clearly see where my message list ends and the message header begins. It's not easy on the eyes, but a nightmare.

    I really admire Outlook and all its capabilities but this is just horrible. And nothing new: it reminds me of the Visual Studio 2012 theme horror; the default themes were *impossible* to work with because they gave you headaches. That got solved by MS who eventually added more themes, but seriously… What moron comes up with this idiocy, pardon the harsh expression there?

    Outlook in Office 2010 was awesome, I worked for years with that.
    Bright, clear color scheme, easy on the eyes. This… is just garbage. I can't work with this, hence my move to Thunderbird.

    This is not the way you please customers Microsoft :(

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