Microsoft Launches ‘Send’ Chat-Style E-Mail App for iPhone

The latest release from Microsoft's Garage idea factory is a quick-messaging app for mobile enterprise users of Outlook e-mail. The "in-and-out" app called Send lets users quickly exchange brief notes and questions with co-workers without the hassle of subject lines, signatures or other elements of formal e-mails.

Microsoft said Send works like text messaging or IM, but keeps conversations within Outlook so they can be easily accessed later like regular e-mails. The app currently works for those with Office 365 business or school e-mail accounts, and will be made more broadly available in the coming months, according to the company.

Send is currently available only for iPhone users in the U.S. and Canada. Versions for Windows and Android phones are expected to come out soon, Microsoft said.

'Fast and Fluid' Conversations

"While tools like text messaging and IM are great for short messages, you often don't have your co-worker's cell phone number or an IM app on your work phone," according to a post today on Microsoft's Outlook Blog. "And we've heard loud and clear from people at work, they want all their communications available in Outlook -- even if they send them from other apps."

Send enables that by providing a text message-like experience within Outlook so users can access their quick conversations later as easily as they can view past e-mail messages. Within the app itself, users can only view other Send messages, rather than all Outlook conversations. Send conversations are synced with Outlook, though, so users can continue conversations through either the app or the full e-mail program.

"Our design principle for the app was to make conversations fast and fluid while keeping the people who are important to you at its core," Microsoft said in the blog post. "Send connects to Office 365 business and school e-mail accounts...

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