Alternative to Outlook on Windows PC reviewed: eM Client

Ever significantly thought of an e-mail shopper different to Microsoft Outlook to your group? The likelihood is that when you’re studying these phrases throughout your working day, you’ll have your e-mail utility open, too, working within the background. And in case you are like nearly all of the working inhabitants, you’ll either be using Gmail on an online web page or utilizing Outlook, the Microsoft e-mail shopper that’s reworked through the years right into a fully-functioning private organizer for dwelling and enterprise.

As the appliance has developed, it’s picked up increasingly more options that companies and workers rely on, like Task lists, Office integrations, Teams, and SharePoint integrations (and latterly LinkedIn), assembly invitations, Notes, and a fully-featured Contacts part. These options, alongside the Office Suite, have created a working surroundings that many not often depart throughout their day. An excessive amount of the functionality over and above “pure” email send & receive is contingent on a Microsoft Exchange Server or Office 365 account, both operated by the group or subcontracted out to Microsoft themselves, a reseller, or MSP. While that tight-knit between complementary functions is usually helpful, it comes with a number of disadvantages, particularly for customers or companies that aren’t solely purchased into the Microsoft “walled backyard.”

For the long-term Windows+Outlook person, there is a component of Stockholm syndrome to the connection between the Outlook utility and the person: it’s an app that may be little beloved and sometimes battled with, but there’s no different with all of the options that we’ve all come to rely on. Or is there?

eM Client’s default mail view.

Outlook Alternative: eM Client

To check out this different e-mail (and the whole lot else) shopper, I ran eM Client as an alternative of Outlook on a Windows 10 occasion to see the way it carried out in contrast to the app we’re all accustomed to. The Outlook interface is acquainted to most individuals, whether or not they use the app each day, so most customers will simply discover their manner round eM Client shortly.

All the standard suspects are there: e-mail (clearly), calendars, Tasks, Contacts, and you’ll simply import your current settings from Outlook. The app is suitable with Google Workspace, iCloud, any POP/IMAP e-mail server, and Office 365 and Exchange. However, on this overview, I stored the main focus on how eM Client performs as a pure Microsoft alternative.

Mac customers usually battle with among the Exchange/Outlook options (assembly invitations, e-mail receipts, synchronization, and some extra) as a result of the Apple eco-system has usually been one thing of an afterthought of Microsoft’s builders (Apple produces its personal walled backyard variations of e-mail, phrase processor, spreadsheet, presentation software program, and so forth).

For Mac customers, there may be an eM Client utility, however that isn’t the topic of this check.

Speed King: eM Client. Slowcoach: Outlook

The very first thing I famous was the app’s velocity: pages rendered and responded shortly to enter, and the place Outlook felt sluggish and bloated at occasions, the whole lot on eM Client was snappy and responsive. For customers on older {hardware}, the Outlook expertise will be irritating; switching between Calendar and Email can generally take some time to “percolate” via. It would possibly solely be a fraction or two of a second, however it’s noticeable on all however the latest workstations, and a collection of small micro-pauses positive provides up over the working day.

Tired of the idiosyncrancies of Microsoft Outlook and looking for an alternative? We review eM Client, the Gmail/Outlook/Apple Mail drop-in replacement.

Outlook’s default Mail view.

This Year’s Model: eM Client. Elephant Man: Outlook

The second factor I observed was the person interface. Here it’s tough to be goal, as each person has their private style. But as a long-time e-mail person (practically 30 years), I’ve all the time discovered Outlook to be wasteful of display screen house. It’s an utility that loves to present it has loads of options, whether or not or not you utilize them.

Sure, all of the taskbars and buttons will be extremely personalized to present or cover issues in each day use or these that may be ignored, frankly. And maybe it’s as a result of my computing life began on 15″ screens, but when I’m concentrating on e-mail (or a calendar), I like to find a way to see what I’m focusing on, not coloured bars providing me translation providers or the choice to begin a Teams assembly.

Email content material vs. instruments, lists, and mailboxes (in orange).

Laser Focus: eM Client. Blunderbuss: Outlook

Doing some fast math, my default Outlook e-mail view comprised 59% e-mail to 41% instruments, choices, navigation, and different onscreen distractions. eM Client’s defaults fared higher with 71% and 29%, respectively. Both functions are extremely customizable, so these figures can simply be adjusted. I’ve included them as defaults – in spite of everything, defaults are what the functions’ builders suppose to give the optimum expertise.

A focal point in altering choices to go well with the person: the place eM Client’s look settings are instantly mirrored within the utility, Outlook usually wants to have the Options window closed for adjustments to take impact.

On Outlook, altering all messages to be rendered in plain textual content, not HTML (I’m old style, text-focused, and wish to optimize on-screen actual property) took an online search and eight mouse clicks to obtain. To set eM Client equally took one click on, and the change was instant.

Differences like which might be a significant stumbling block when you’re tweaking settings to discover your supreme, and whereas Outlook appears reluctant to change some settings and not using a battle, eM Client presents all choices upfront.

Tired of the idiosyncrancies of Microsoft Outlook and looking for an alternative? We review eM Client, the Gmail/Outlook/Apple Mail drop-in replacement.

Outlook’s default calendar view.

On the job: Outlook. Off the clock: eM Client

To be frank, eM Client’s look tweaks are so in depth and detailed that it could be straightforward to lose a day in among the many sub-menus and lots of of choices for colours, spotlight shades, background types, and so on. There are a number of shortcuts to propagating adjustments in a number of locations (use a selected alternative colour all over the place the unique was, for example) that may velocity up the method, however the stage of granularity is astounding.

Both apps provide some prebuilt templates, and Outlook customers can retailer these settings on their Office 365/Exchange server to be used all over the place. eM Client customers can save their settings as a person XML file and import them manually on different situations of the appliance.

Tight-knit: Outlook. Loose weave: eM Client

When working throughout a number of productiveness instruments, Outlook noses forward of its third-party rival, however solely simply. As you would possibly count on in a pure Microsoft surroundings, the compatibility between Outlook and others from the Microsoft steady is fairly seamless. Meeting invitations’ acceptance or counter-suggestions all get channeled appropriately, emails turn out to be Tasks at a single click on, and Calendar objects will be shortly shared throughout Active Directory-hosted Contacts and outdoors events too.

eM Client managed 98% of those each day duties (which one usually wouldn’t pay a lot consideration to), however I did discover some inconsistencies between assembly invite emails and calendar entries, particularly when mixing up my working apps between Outlook on Android and eM Client on the desktop. There had been no showstoppers, merely the odd incongruity which may bother some customers. But within the grand scheme of issues, there was no noticeable impact on any work actions.

Tired of the idiosyncrancies of Microsoft Outlook and looking for an alternative? We review eM Client, the Gmail/Outlook/Apple Mail drop-in replacement.

eM Client’s useful attachments view.

Savings account: Outlook. Spendthrift: eM Client

If your group has purchased into the Office 365 licensing scheme, Outlook comes as a part of the bundle that prices upwards of 5 or 6 {dollars} a month. For that cash, customers additionally get PowerPoint, Excel, Word, Teams, and in some tiers, extras like Access. eM Client, nevertheless, prices customers $50 as a one-off license price for the fully-featured utility. (There is a free model, however it may well’t be utilized in a enterprise setting in accordance to the license phrases.) For that cash, there isn’t any extra Office suite, clearly. Prices for businesses shopping for in bulk fall dramatically, nevertheless: round $15 per seat for 20 copies.


If you’re an Outlook person who couldn’t actually care much less concerning the utility used to get a day’s work accomplished, and it appears simply effective from the place you’re, then eM Client is just not for you.

But when you like your apps “simply so,” rigorously crafted to optimize your workflows, with the instruments you want at hand (and nothing else), then eM Client is your best option. If you will get the boss to pay for the license, all the higher. If not, the up-front value might be thought to be a check of simply how devoted you’re — would you dip into your personal pocket to make it easier to work the best way you need to?

Tired of the idiosyncrancies of Microsoft Outlook and looking for an alternative? We review eM Client, the Gmail/Outlook/Apple Mail drop-in replacement.

eM Client’s default calendar view.

Joe Green

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