Microsoft to kill HTML-Mails in Outlook 2007
There was much talk about Microsofts decision to change the HTML rendering engine in the upcoming Outlook 2007. There were headlines like „
Microsoft takes email design back 5 years” or „
Microsoft Breaks HTML Email Rendering in Outlook 2007”.
Now is that really true? Is it such a bad thing that CSS, Flash and other features are not supported any more?
Who is the recipient for all these nicely formatted e-mails? End-users, the guys and dolls at home, looking at e-mails containing news-summaries and/or some type of advertising.
At companies, responsible Admins allready removed Flash and company from e-mails. And most of the business mail I see is either text only or an empty e-mail with an attachment.
So, who would really be affected by Microsofts change? The end-users.
But wait, what are they using? Mostly Outlook Express, as that came at „no” additional cost with their windows licence. If you care to take a look at Windows Vista, there is no more Outlook Express only „Windows Mail” (Apple users might find that name slightly familiar). And Microsoft said nothing regarding Windows Mail and HTML-rendering. As I had not the time yet to check out Vista in depth, I would hazard a guess that HTML-rendering in Windows Mail will still use IE 7’s rendering engine.
So that leaves us with the business users as victims of this change. I would assume, that adoption of Outlook 2007 will proceed at a very slow level. Why? Because Microsoft changed the licensing of Outlook and Exchange. If you are not an owner of an Exchange Server 2003 WITH Software Assurance, you are not eligible to use Outlook 2007 when you upgrade to Exchange Server 2007.
Let me say it again: „
Unlike prior versions, Exchange Server 2007 Standard or Enterprise does not include the right to install Outlook on devices for which CALs are obtained.”. Another way to „encourage” the update to Office 2007 or at least additional Outlook sales. They won’t tell you this at Better Together: Do More with Microsoft Ofifice Outlook 2007 and Microsoft Exchange Server 2007. ;)
A lot of people concluded that the switch from IE’s to Word’s HTML rendering engine in Outlook 2007 will hurt Microsoft. I don’t think so.
And maybe, just maybe, people will once again concentrate on the content of the mail, not on the presentation.
In the beginning was the word ...
... and the word was Content-type: text/plain