Geekwire just published a recording of an internal debate within their staff about Outlook vs. Gmail. They had two staff members commenting on each side of the debate. I’ve also struggled with this issue all year. Sometimes due to being offline, like at my rural home, I can only use Outlook and other times when working with specific business software like my client management system I can only work with Outlook.
There is an obvious solution: a good integration app. The problem is that it doesn’t appear to exist. I’ve tested a few of these and currently use a few workarounds including the Mail, Calendar built into Windows 10.
This is a summary of my notes from the Geekwire discussion:
Outlook proponents said:
Outlook is better for searching.
An app like Outlook is better for organizing and offline.
Strings of emails are awkward and unclear, “dyslectic” in Gmail.
Gmail proponents said:
Outlook is “old school”.
Feel like an empowered user with Gmail.
Favoriting an email saves it.
“Undo send” is available.
Gmail is more like a task list.
Gchat for groups is important for their office and only available through Gmail.
Two of my biggest complaints about Gmail were discussed in the Geekwire discussion: I can;t always find stuff, the latest comment in a tread is not always obvious and I can’t get it offline.
My big problem with Outlook was not discussed: many third party developers of new programs do not provide integration.
For now, the decision is made automatically for me. My rural home/office in New Jersey does not yet have high speed internet access and has only intermittent access to low speed cellular signal. So for something as basic as email, contacts and calendar I am forced to rely on applications that work offline and sync later.