February 16, 2024

5 Outlook Alternatives for Different Email Needs in 2024

Microsoft Outlook is a long-standing titan when it comes to comprehensive email and productivity solutions. With integrated features like email, calendar, and task management, Outlook has become a staple in the personal productivity landscape. However there’s now a plethora of options for people to choose from according to their specific needs.

Without further ado, here’s a list of our top 5 Outlook alternatives. 

1. Gmail from Google Workspace

Google Workspace, formerly known as G Suite, offers a comprehensive suite of productivity tools, with Gmail as its email component. However, it transcends beyond traditional email by seamlessly integrating with Google Calendar, Google Drive, Google Meet, and other collaboration tools like Google Docs, Sheets, Slides and Forms. Google Workspace is renowned for its cloud-based approach, concentrating on real-time collaboration and accessibility from any device.

Image taken from google’s gmail about page

Gmail Pros

Integration with other Google services: Google Workspace excels in the seamless cloud-based integration of its suite, and gmail is not left behind. Its smooth integration with services like Drive, Calendar, and Meet, make it easy to share attachments and collaborate with others.

More robust spam filters: According to Google Workspace blog, its spam filters are so effective that they block 99.9 percent of spam, phishing, and malware from reaching users’ inboxes. 

User-friendly interface: Comparing it with Outlook, Gmail stands out by having a friendlier and more intuitive user interface than Outlook.

Gmail cons

Less Storage: Gmail offers 15 GB of storage shared across Gmail, Drive and Google Photos. Whereas Outlook offers 15 GB just for Outlook and another 5 GB for cloud storage on OneDrive.

Learning Curve: Transitioning from traditional desktop-based solutions may pose a learning curve for some users.

Less integration with Microsoft products: As expected, each email service integrates better with its correspondent suite. Therefore, if you’re a big Microsoft 365 enthusiast, then maybe gmail won’t be the best contendant in terms of integration with the Microsoft suite.

Is Gmail right for you?

If you're looking for a versatile, collaboration-focused email solution with robust productivity tools at a competitive price point, then Gmail is likely a great fit. Part of the comprehensive Google Workspace suite, Gmail seamlessly integrates cloud-based email, real-time document editing, group chats, video conferencing, calendars, and more into one affordable package - making it an excellent option to enhance teamwork and streamline communication for both businesses and individuals.

2. Mozilla Thunderbird

Mozilla Thunderbird is an open-source email platform which also functions as a full personal information manager that provides a high degree of customization. It supports email management, calendaring, and has a wide range of add-ons as well as extensions. It’s a great contender in the world of open-source email services.

Image taken from Thunderbird

Mozilla Thunderbird Pros

Open Source Customization: Thunderbird's open-source nature allows for extensive customization, making it suitable for users who prefer personalized setups.

Cross-Platform Compatibility: Thunderbird works seamlessly across Windows, macOS, and Linux, offering flexibility for users with diverse system preferences.

Security Features: Thunderbird is known for its security features, including phishing protection and encryption support.

Add-Ons and Extensions: A wide range of add-ons and extensions are available to enhance Thunderbird’s functionality.

Mozilla Thunderbird Cons

Limited Collaboration Tools: Thunderbird may not be as feature-rich in collaboration tools compared to cloud-based applications.

Interface Complexity: While customizable, the interface may be considered less intuitive for some users.

Is Thunderbird right for you?

Mozilla Thunderbird may be the right email solution if you prefer a highly customizable, cross-platform, open-source standalone application over cloud-based providers. It offers excellent compatibility across different operating systems, robust security features, and the flexibility to tailor the email client to your exact preferences. However, it lacks some of the collaboration tools and real-time editing capabilities found in cloud-based suites, making it best suited for individuals or businesses prioritizing customization and an on-premises email solution over integrated productivity apps.

3. Zoho Mail

Zoho Mail is part of the Zoho Workplace suite, offering a comprehensive set of applications for business communication and collaboration. It features a clean and user-friendly interface and is known for its affordability, making it a suitable option for small to medium-sized businesses.

Taken from the Zoho Mail web page

Zoho Mail Pros

Integrated Suite: Zoho Mail is part of the broader Zoho Workplace suite, providing a seamless experience with integrated collaboration tools.

Affordability: Zoho Mail is often more budget-friendly than some other enterprise-level solutions.

Security Features: Prioritizes security with features like two-factor authentication and data encryption.

Custom Domain Support: Businesses can use their custom domains with Zoho Mail.

Zoho Mail Cons

Learning Curve for Advanced Features: Some advanced features may require a learning curve for users unfamiliar with the Zoho ecosystem.

Limited Third-Party Integrations: While it integrates with key applications, Zoho Mail may have fewer integrations compared to larger platforms.

Is Zoho Mail right for you?

If you're looking for an affordable email solution with a user-friendly interface, good security features, and integrated collaboration tools for small to medium businesses, Zoho Mail could be the right choice. While there may be a learning curve for more advanced features, Zoho Mail's cost-effectiveness and compatibility with various business applications makes it appealing for budget-conscious individuals or companies that don't want to compromise on essential email and productivity capabilities. Its focus on affordability without sacrificing core features makes Zoho Mail a potentially great fit.

4. Mailbird

Mailbird is a user-friendly email client for Windows, offering a simplified and intuitive interface. It has a free plan that can be used with a single email account as well as paid plans for individual users and businesses. It aggregates multiple email accounts, integrates with different apps like Twitter, WhatsApp, Google, Dropbox, many others among others, and provides customization options for a personalized user experience.

Image taken from Mailbird

Mailbird Pros

Simplified Interface: Mailbird stands out for its clean and straightforward interface, providing users with an uncomplicated and intuitive email management experience.

Unified Inbox: One of Mailbird's notable features is the ability to aggregate emails from multiple accounts into a unified inbox. This streamlines organization and simplifies access to various email sources.

App Integrations: Mailbird goes beyond traditional email management by integrating with messaging apps like WhatsApp and productivity tools. This enhances its functionality and makes it a versatile communication hub.

Customization Options: While maintaining simplicity, Mailbird provides customization options, allowing users to personalize their email experience according to their preferences.

Mailbird Cons

Limited Platform Compatibility: Currently, Mailbird is available only for Windows, which may limit its suitability for users who operate on different operating systems.

Focused Feature Set: While excelling in simplicity, Mailbird may have a more focused feature set compared to some comprehensive email suites. Users seeking a broader range of integrated tools might find it lacking in certain areas.

Bugs and crashed: Many users have experienced the app getting slow, having buds or full-on crashing with tasks that should be as demanding, which can be a problem for someone actively using their email throughout the day.

Is Mailbird right for you?

If you're a Windows user seeking a simplified, efficient, and highly customizable email experience, then Mailbird could be the ideal solution. While Mailbird may have a more limited feature set compared to some alternatives, its focus on an intuitive design, personalization options, and emphasis on streamlining email management within the Windows ecosystem make it an exceptional choice for those who prioritize simplicity and a tailored email workflow over advanced capabilities.

5. Proton Mail

ProtonMail is well known for its emphasis on privacy and prioritizing end-to-end data encryption. It is a platform that provides its users with a secure environment for their personal communication, ensuring the confidentiality and security of their emails. ProtonMail is one provider that stands out for its commitment to user privacy and cross-platform compatibility, as well as having a remarkably intuitive interface.  

Image taken from ProtonMail land page

Proton Mail Pros

Security and Privacy: ProtonMail excels in providing robust security features, including end-to-end encryption, ensuring that user communications remain private and protected.

User-Friendly Interface: The interface is designed to be intuitive and user-friendly, making it accessible to a wide range of users. The simplicity of the design enhances the overall user experience.

Ad-Free Experience: ProtonMail offers an ad-free email experience, ensuring that users can focus on their communications without distractions.

Cross-Platform Compatibility: Available on various platforms, including iOS and Android, ProtonMail provides flexibility for users who prefer accessing their email from different devices.

Proton Mail Cons

Limited Collaboration Features: ProtonMail, while excelling in security and privacy, may have fewer collaboration features compared to comprehensive collaboration suites. It is primarily designed for secure personal communication.

Free Plan Limitations: The free plan has limitations in terms of storage and features, and users requiring advanced functionalities may need to opt for a subscription plan.

Is Proton Mail right for you?

Proton mail is an excellent option for individual users who are looking for an email and communications provider that prioritizes their privacy and security. Its end-to-end encryption and commitment to user confidentiality make it a knockout choice. Its user-friendly interface ensures accessibility and convenience for all users, as the learning curve for this provider isn’t too steep, while the ad-free environment contributes to a more focused email experience. While collaboration features may be limited, ProtonMail’s main strength lies in delivering a secure and private platform for personal email. People who value privacy above all else should consider ProtonMail as their preferred email solution.


While Outlook is feature-rich, it's worth exploring alternatives that may better suit your unique needs and preferences. Just as you might seek out streaming services beyond the most popular ones for diverse, tailored content, trying alternative email and productivity solutions gives you a chance to find the ideal fit. Keeping an open mind and testing different options ensures you'll enhance your digital experience and stay adaptable as technology rapidly evolves. Don't hesitate to look beyond Outlook - you may discover an alternative that feels made for you.