Microsoft No Longer Developing Outlook Express

Thursday August 14th, 2003

Several people wrote in to tell us that Microsoft is not doing any new development work on Outlook Express, the company's free mail and newsgroups client, which is bundled with both Internet Explorer and Windows. The emphasis for home users will now be placed on Hotmail and MSN, while corporations will be reminded that they should have been using Outlook all along. Many MozillaZine readers have noted the opportunity that this presents for Mozilla Thunderbird, the Mozilla project's standalone mail and newsgroups program. While the first milestone of Thunderbird has only recently been released, the application is based on the mature codebase of the Mozilla Application Suite's Mail & Newsgroups component. Microsoft's cancellation of further Outlook Express development follows on from the company's announcement that it will offer no further upgrades to the standalone Windows version of Internet Explorer and its decision to end development of IE for Mac OS X.

Update: J. A. Prufrock wrote in to tell us that Microsoft is now saying Outlook Express will continue to be developed after all. Microsoft's about-turn in its public statements is nothing new: shortly after the news broke that there would be no further standalone versions of IE for Windows, the company stressed that it was in fact too early to discuss its long-term plans for the browser.

#51 Re: Re: "It's a good thing"

by asa <>

Friday August 15th, 2003 4:40 PM

You are replying to this message

"But Thunderbird isn't of much use to me if it doesn't work with my [microsoft proprietary] e-mail account, is it?"

When Microsoft starts serving your email data in a standard email format then I suspect Thunderbird will be able to read it.

I certainly wouldn't trade top-of-the-line client spam filtering and a decent ISP for a spam-filled and space-limited free web-based email account running inside a client that's responsible for spreading more viruses, trojans and worms than any other sofware product on the planet.