One of my all time favorite Mac applications was Microsoft’s Entourage. It was sweet about 10 years ago, but hasn’t aged well. I feel like I left the Titanic just before the last voyage. I switched. Microsoft is killing Entourage and giving Mac users Outlook. From Microsoft’s Mac Business Unit (MacBU):
Outlook for Mac, will replace Entourage for Mac. MacBU is providing this early information to meet the planning needs of enterprise customers. For current Entourage users, Microsoft Entourage 2008 for Mac, Web Services Edition is available today, providing performance and reliability improvements and enabling users to sync Tasks, Notes and Categories.
Translated, “Don’t freak out, keep buying Entourage because we have warehouses full of it.” Microsoft goes on to describe all the wonderful features and benefits of the Entourage that exists now right after telling Mac users it won’t exist in the future, but that a new version is on the way next month. Way to go, Microsoft.
Outlook for Mac releasing in the next version reflects the team’s commitment to further develop the Mac’s leading productivity suite. This new application will deliver significant changes — ultimately allowing for increased productivity across platforms, which continues to be the top request of enterprise customers.
If you’re an enterprise which runs a mix of Exchange, Outlook, and Entourage then this is good news. For the Mac users who like Entourage, get ready for something even more complex, less friendly, and less than the Windows counterpart. But not until late 2010.
Not wanting to be stiffed by Microsoft again, I switched to Mail, iCal, Address Book, and other utility friends already.
What’s interesting about Microsoft’s Press Release regarding Entourage’s demise and Outlooks rebirth on the Mac is how much effort went into selling what’s there already in Entourage today, while announcing what’s coming in Outlook for Mac in 2010, while announcing Microsoft Office 2008 Business Edition which will be available in September, 2009.
What’s wrong with this picture? In September, 2009 I should be able to buy a 2010 Chevy or Ford. Why, in 2009 does Microsoft still insist on selling a product saddled with the date 2008 in the name?
Why do I even bother to ask? And, why is Microsoft announcing all this now? Because Mac OS X Snow Leopard will come with Exchange-compatible versions of Mail and iCal next month. They don’t want to lose more Entourage customers to Apple.