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4 column layout is not good for reading email content.

the screen is separated into 4 columns: folder list, email subject list, email content and ads. I do not mind ads but it takes a huge potion of screen if 4 columns!
I can't read the email content in such a small column area!
No one write an email that expected people read in column!

1,113 votes
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Anonymous shared this idea  ·   ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →

Hi all – First off thanks for all of the valuable feedback. We review it all and try to ensure we are addressing things! I just wanted to give some updates about all of the feedback about the multiple columns

We totally understand that some of you really do not enjoy the multi column or reading pane on the right hand side.

So we have introduced a few quick settings that will allow you to configure the experience in a way that is pleasing to you.

Once you are logged into your mailbox (and in the Beta) do the following
1) Click on the Gear in the top right hand corner
2) This will show the Quick Settings Pane
3) The items you will likely want to configure are Reading Pane. For this you can Either turn it off, have it on the bottom, or on the right.
4) Message Preview – If you want the more single line view of your messages (subject only), turn this off.

One thing to call out, as you make changes in the quick settings pane your inbox will update right away. This should help you find the setting and experience that you enjoy the most.

Please keep all of the great feedback coming!

David Los

201 comments

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  • Candice commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    I do wish there was a way to customize appearance beyond certain themes. I prefer to have the body of the email I'm reading on the lower half of the screen and my inbox on top as it was with the older Outlook.

    I am not always on a widescreen monitor, and having the vertical-oriented new look ends up looking terrible on a 4:3 monitor or even my phone. Please, allow us to customize orientation or even placement of the panels in our inbox.

  • Jonathan commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    Looks so good and fast, but the columms look so disordered and i don´t like it very much, but i would prefer outlook look like beta looks.. but fix that!!

  • Michelle commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    I find the reading panel is too narrow for most emails so you have to scroll back and forth to read/see the entire email. I do like the inclusion of the reading panel but even when I make the folder/email column smaller, it doesn't show the entire email. I think the email column could be significantly smaller than it currently is since having an email column so large while including the reading panel is sort of redundant as you can get the sender/title information from the reading panel.

    On an alternative idea, if the folder section is collapsible, then it would create more space for the reading panel. I don't think most people would need the folder section regularly unless they are accessing different folders for a specific reason.

  • josjenap@hotmail.com commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    The mail I wanted to read was not completely visible. There was a table in the mail, and the information in the last column was not visible when scrolling to the right. Because of this I reverted back to the other version.

  • JOCELYN CHUA commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    I do not like how the mails are listed , with column it makes letters harder to read, harder to find which email I am reading coz the title is on the left but reading the letter on the right when open. I do not like that the mails look smaller cannot read everything coz of the column, you have to use arrow keys just to read what's on the right and left. too much work, steps added just to open a letter, cursor going anywhere , have to be slow coz the typed letter would be deleted accidentally or any letters hit by the cursor

  • JOCELYN CHUA commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    I do not like how the mails are listed , with column it makes letters harder to read, harder to find which email I am reading coz the title is on the left but reading the letter on the right when open. I do not like that the mails look smaller cannot read everything coz of the column, you have to use arrow keys just to read what's on the right and left. too much work, steps added just to open a letter, cursor going anywhere , have to be slow coz the typed letter would be deleted accidentally or any letters hit by the cursor

  • regine lemberger commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    With this new layout I have to browse left & right all the time in order to read an email.
    I have tried to reduce the width of the columns showing the email titles in order to have a full view of the text but it did not work.

    With this layout I cannot see the full email titles nor can I easily see the email text.

    Rating 0 out of 10 !

  • Ulrike Schulz commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    Keep it simple and stop changing things without improving them.
    Too many columns.
    Read/unread hard to make out
    Visually busy and hard to identify read/unread mails

  • Stephanie Glynn commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    The columns make it feel too cluttered. Give the option to "X" out of a column for instance when writing an email, so that only the email you are writing is on the page.

  • Jeff Nording commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    Not enough space to read my emails.
    No obvious option to go to full screen reading. No obvious sorting method. Make it both simple and powerful. Simple for those who just want an easy strait forward email client but with the power and flexibility that outlook is know for. Sort of windows mail meets outlook with a lot of Sunrise calender thrown in.

  • Alice commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    I don't really like the "3 columns" presentation. The column in the middle with a preview of the emails is useless to me, we can't see enough emails in the list and it looks a bit messy (alignments, information...), not very clear...

  • li xin commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    not enough space left of the mail, folder column and conversation column occupied too much space, makes the content of mail too small.

  • Ana commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    The vertical columns are disturbing, and something that made my work extremely difficult: they uninstalled the different languages dictionaries. Right now the dictionary is only available in English, but I always used (and need to keep using) at least 3 or 4 different dictionaries a day...

  • Anonymous commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    It is not enogh quick in reading emails. When I take a look at my post, at first I need to know:
    - how many new emails I have received;
    - how many important emails I urgently have to read.

    The new version need more space in the window and I cannot have an overview (it is not a list like the current version), therefore I cannot quickly see at a glance the most important emails.

  • Anonymous commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    Too many boxes. Too much colour. Please make simplistic stylish mail tool; if I can't read the end of a email title the column isnt wide enough.

    Always aim for more functionality but simpler design.

    On the positive side the quick view function is good.

  • Daniel commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    As many have said before the beta looks a lot messier and more cluttered than the current version. I find it hard to read visual e-mails such as E-bay's newsletters and receipts. I think this is due to the huge amount of columns that do nothing when I'm trying to read an email. Instead of having to scroll up and down now I also have to scroll left and right.

    My idea would be to hide the columns on the left (folders, inbox, etc.) when I open an email, because the focus here is the email, not the folders I don't use when reading the email. It would be cool to have all those columns appear only when I move my mouse on the left side of the screen, kind of like the Charms in Windows 8 when having an email/conversation open.

    I should also mention that my screen size is not the largest. I have a screen resolution of 1280x800.

  • f.renko@hotmail.com commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    the viewing column is way too small + I have to move left/right to read the content! Couldn't figure out how to maximize an email.

  • Anonymous commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    Please eliminate the far right column. It's annoying and it keeps me from seeing the entire email.

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