What's new in Outlook 2016 for Windows?

Outlook 2016 for Windows has all the tools and functionality you've used before, as well as new and improved features for professional email, calendar, contacts, and task management to help you communicate faster and easier.

Note: The following feature updates are available to Office 365 subscribers. They will first roll out to Office Insider participants, and later to consumer and commercial Office 365 subscribers. If you have an Office 365 subscription, make sure you have the latest version of Office.

November 2016 Updates

Insert icons

You can now insert icons into your email messages and calendar events. Just choose Icons from the Insert tab on the ribbon and choose from a variety of different categories including People, Arts, Animals, and Business.

Previous updates

Events from email

Outlook can now automatically create events from email messages you receive with flight, hotel, or car reservations or package delivery and tracking information. No more booking a flight and then adding the flight details to your calendar manually. All events created are marked private, so only you can see them. For more information, see Automatically add travel and package delivery events to your calendar.

SVG images

Office Insiders who have an Office 365 subscription can insert and edit scalable vector graphic (SVG) images in emails to create sharp, well-designed content. SVG images don't lose any quality if they are zoomed or resized. For more information, see Insert SVG images.

Accessibility built right in

Outlook now has improved keyboard and assistive technology experiences for reading email, scheduling meetings, and adding a signature. For more information, see What's New in Outlook Accessibility.

Use @ to get someone's attention

If you'd like to get someone's attention in an email message or a meeting invite, you can type the @ symbol followed by their name in the body of the email message or a meeting invite. If you do, not only will their name be highlighted in the message body or invite details, but Outlook will automatically add them to the To line of the email or meeting invite. For more information, see Use @ to get someone's attention.

New Outlook training

The Office Training Center has 9 new Outlook courses, created in partnership with LinkedIn Learning. Watch videos at your pace to learn about Outlook 2016 including organizing messages and managing calendars. Also learn how to get unlimited access to over 4,000 video courses from LinkedIn Learning. See all our Outlook training.

Modern In-App Help & Support

The Tell Me what you want to do box at the top of the Ribbon has been updated with improved search, content and recommendations to answer your questions better and fast. Now when you enter a search for a certain task, function or question you'll see a wide variety of options. If it's a quick task Outlook will try to let you take care of it right from the Tell Me pane. If it's a more complex question, we'll show you help that we think best matches your needs. Try it out to see how fast you can find what you're looking for and get things done.

Type what you'd like to do into the Tell Me box in Outlook and Tell Me will help you with that task

Have an idea?

You can now suggest and vote on future feature ideas right from Outlook by clicking File > Feedback > Suggest a feature.

Browse and create groups from the ribbon

It's now even easier to browse and create groups in Outlook 2016 because two new buttons are available on the ribbon.

New Group and Browse Groups buttons on the ribbon

You'll find both buttons on the Home tab of the groups ribbon. For information about how to create a group, see Create a group in Outlook 2016.

Outlook 2016 Groups (Office 365 work or school account)

With Outlook 2016 you can use Groups instead of distribution lists to communicate and collaborate with your team members.

Groups are the better way to collaborate because:

  • You can create groups with a few clicks and organize them around topics and conversations to work with your teams.

  • With Groups in Outlook 2016, teams now have a shared place for all their email conversations with full history, allowing teams to engage with members right from the Group’s inbox, create team events, join existing Groups or create new ones.

    Groups on the left nav bar

  • You can add a group as a favorite just like a folder. Adding a group as a favorite gives you full access to conversation history when you are offline.

    Groups in Favorites

  • Get access to past conversations and history for Groups you have joined or added as a member.

  • Within the Groups shared space, messages are grouped together for each conversation to facilitate quick communication with your team. You can "Like" a message within a conversation and post a quick reply to have a quick back and forth conversations with your team.

    You can also receive social notifications in Outlook when someone "Likes" your message.

  • Schedule meetings on a group calendar that everyone in group can update.

  • You can access a group’s conversation in your Inbox by subscribing to a group. This makes it behave like a distribution list. You can also unsubscribe at any time.

  • Manage groups from Outlook by adding or removing members.

For information about how to create a Group, see Create a group in Outlook 2016. Make sure to check the topics at the bottom of that article to learn about joining and managing groups, as well as other features.

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