Using Narrator with the Mail app in Windows 10: search, folders, and filters

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In this module, learn how to use Narrator and keyboard shortcuts in Mail for Windows 10 to search for email based on who it is from. You'll also learn how to find and use all your folders. To complete this module, play the video in this module and try out the steps.

Search email

  1. From the message list - or from any other folder, go to the Search box by using Ctrl+E.

  2. To find a word that you know is in a message, or a message from a particular person, type the word or person's name in the Search box.

  3. Read the results.

Want More?

Get help for using a screen reader with Mail for Windows 10

Keyboard shortcuts in Mail and Calendar apps for Windows 10

Let’s use Narrator to explore the Navigation Pane and Message list in the Windows 10 mail app.

We’ll pay special attention to search, folders, and filters.

I’ve already opened the Mail app, and I’ve got Narrator running.

By default, Narrator starts in the Mail app by reading the preview text for the first email in my message list.

I’ll press the Tab key to jump to the Navigation button, which opens and closes the Navigation Pane. Right now, the Navigation Pane is already open.

Each time I press the Tab key, I jump to the next Tab stop in the Mail app:

As you can hear, the Tab stops loop all the way around to the message list, where we started.

Many of the commands in the Mail app also have keyboard shortcuts. Let’s go straight to the Search box by pressing Control and E

Narrator tells me I’m in Search, and that I can type something. I’ll search for mail from my co-worker, Katie.

As soon as I press Enter, Focus jumps to the first search result, and starts reading the preview text. As you can hear, Mail found an email from Katie.

I can use the Down Arrow to browse through my results and find what I want. If Search hadn’t found any results on my computer, Narrator wouldn’t have said anything.

In that case, I can use Tab to navigate to Search Online, which expands the search to my mail server. This lets me search older messages that are no longer on my device. For now, I’ll press Escape to close search and go back to the message list.

The mail folders in my Favorites list are already in the Navigation pane. But I can also Tab to the Folders button and press Enter to access all of my folders. If I have multiple mail accounts hooked up to the Mail app, each account will have its own set of folders.

I’ll press the Down Arrow to browse through my folders

I’ll use the Up Arrow to go back to the Inbox folder, then press Enter to open it in my Message list.

I can also press Control Shift I to open the inbox.

Finally, let’s use filters to narrow down our message list. I’ll press Tab until I land on the Filter button. Then I’ll press Enter to expand it.

I can use the Up and Down Arrow keys to move between the filter options, and press Enter to select one:

All shows all the emails in the folder…

Unread shows only messages that are marked as unread…

…and Flagged shows only messages that have been flagged as important.

If I don’t want to change my filter, I can use Escape to cancel. In the next part of this series, we’ll learn how to compose and format messages using Narrator and the Mail app.

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