Shared Mailboxes for All, Dark Mode for Some
After much anticipation, shared mailbox support is now generally available for Outlook mobile. You need three things in place to be able to add shared mailboxes:
- A suitable version: Outlook for iOS version 3.37 or later or Outlook for Android 3.0.134 or later.
- Back-end support for the Microsoft synchronization technology (see this article to see how to check if Outlook is using the new sync).
- Your account is enabled for the feature. My contacts at Microsoft say that the roll-out of shared mailboxes is now past 50% of all Office 365 tenants after some pauses to fix bugs.
With the prerequisites in place, you can add shared mailboxes as easily as adding any other mailbox. According to the Office 365 Roadmap, support for delegate access to mailboxes in Outlook Mobile is coming too (Q1 CY2020).
Outlook Mobile Goes Dark
In other news, Office 365 notification MC189044 (August 28) announces that dark mode is starting to roll out for Outlook Mobile. Version 4.1 of Outlook for iOS is now available to Outlook Insiders who can download beta versions through the Testflight app. Support for dark mode (Figure 1) brings Outlook mobile up to speed with its desktop and browser counterparts. Even after using the new software for just a few days, I like dark mode much more on mobile than I do on other platforms. It just seems more natural to use a darkened mobile app.
To throw some light into what Microsoft is doing (no pun intended), Jon Friedman, head of Office design, posted an article to explain the design principles in dark mode. This article tells us that Outlook will be able to manage dark mode automatically based on user preferences when iOS 13 and Android Q are available.
[Update September 9: A tweet by Michael Palermiti, head of product for Outlook, says that dark mode is now 100% deployed]
Enabling Dark Mode
To set dark mode in Outlook for iOS, go to preferences and select the option (Figure 2). You need to restart Outlook to make dark mode effective (I had to restart iOS, but I believe this is usually unnecessary).
When Your Client Can Go Dark
According to the Office 365 Roadmap, the planned release for dark mode is September 2019 for both iOS and Android. In the run-up to general availability, apparently Microsoft has enabled dark mode for a select group of non-Testflight users who run the most recently released client software. Roughly 10% of users are in this category, so if your device has version 4.0 of the iOS client or version 3.0.137 of the Android client, you might be able to select dark mode now. Have a look!
For more information about Outlook and other clients, read the chapter about Office 365 clients in the Office 365 for IT Pros eBook.