Four alternatives for Outlook you should consider

With so many different email services to choose from, finding alternatives for Outlook is not an easy feat. Check out our reviews to speed up the process.
According to recent statistics, Outlook is the third most popular email client, right after Apple Mail and Gmail. Its popularity does not come as a surprise, as it’s a highly versatile platform that can meet the needs of many personal and business users.Still, Outlook is far from perfect. It has a few significant drawbacks, particularly in the privacy and security areas. In this article, you will learn more about those shortcomings and discover some alternatives for Outlook worth looking into.
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Why you should explore Outlook alternatives

Outlook comes with several limitations that damage its usability and overall user experience. While the service is free to use, you don’t get much unless you upgrade to a paid plan. The free version has ads that can cause distraction and comes with only 5 GB of cloud storage. You do get 15 GB of dedicated email storage, but an average user might need more for their files.The only way to get more storage and remove ads is to upgrade to a paid plan, starting at $6.99 per month for personal users and $6 for business users. Even those plans aren’t as comprehensive as you might need since you won’t get access to the desktop client unless you opt for at least Microsoft 365 Business Standard, which comes at $12.50/month.You also don’t get many security features unless you upgrade—only the paid Outlook versions offer features like attachment scanning and link checking. Encryption with a free plan is also limited to basic protocols like TLS (Transport Layer Security), which isn’t strong enough to safeguard your correspondence.This is a major problem because encryption is a key component of email security. There are several encryption types, but end-to-end encryption (E2EE) is the gold standard. It ensures that only the recipient can access plaintext email versions, so nobody else—including the provider—can see your correspondence. While Outlook offers E2EE, it’s only included in the highest-priced tiers.Outlook also disappoints when it comes to reliability, as many users have reported crashes and errors. It’s also not particularly well optimized for all operating systems and can be slow at times.The above issues make Outlook a subpar option for many user categories. The good news is that you can explore various platforms that make up for its shortcomings.

Four alternatives to Outlook reviewed

While there are numerous Outlook alternatives on the market, a few services stand out:
  1. Mailbird
  2. Front
  3. Spark
  4. Skiff Mail


Source: MailbirdMailbird has proven itself as a reliable and highly functional email client. The platform’s main selling point is that it’s straightforward and easy to use, so even beginners won’t face a significant learning curve. Still, weak security makes it a subpar option for safe correspondence.


Mailbird offers various plans with a 14-day money-back guarantee. You can try it for free but must pay to keep using it after the trial ends. If you decide to proceed, you can choose between four plans:
  1. Personal Yearly—$2.28 per month billed annually
  2. Personal Pay Once—$49.50 per user
  3. Business Yearly—$4.03 per month billed annually
  4. Business Pay Once—$99.75 per user
Note that these prices include the discount Mailbird is offering as of this writing, so they might change soon.

Pros and cons

Mailbird offers a minimalistic user interface free of distractions. If you want to expand its usability, you can leverage its numerous integrations with popular productivity tools, such as:
  • Asana—A customizable content management system designed to help companies streamline their projects
  • Google Workspace—Besides the standard document management platforms, the integration encompasses collaboration tools like Calendar, Meet, and Chat
  • Slack—A comprehensive messaging app for business
A standout feature is Unified Inbox, which combines messages and emails from multiple addresses. The interface is customizable, so you can adapt it to your needs and even access emails without an internet connection (you’ll still need a connection to sync your inbox).The platform also comes with some handy features like Email Tracking, Undo Send, and Advanced Attachment Search that lets you avoid looking for attachments manually.While Mailbird has many advantages over Outlook, it lacks strong encryption—there’s no end-to-end encryption regardless of your chosen plan, so your correspondence may be vulnerable.Mailbird is currently available only for Windows. The macOS version is in development, and you can sign up for early access.
Easy to useNo free option
Free trialNo macOS version
New users discountsNo end-to-end encryption


Source: FrontFront is a communication hub with a modern interface inspired by email clients. It’s an out-of-the-box solution aimed primarily at businesses that need more than an email client, but its many functions come at a price that an average user might not be comfortable with.
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Front doesn’t offer a free plan, and you’ll need to splurge quite a bit to use it. You can choose between four tiers:
  1. Starter—$19/month billed annually
  2. Growth—$49/month billed annually
  3. Scale—$99/month billed annually
  4. Premier—$229/month billed annually

Pros and cons

Front offers a comprehensive set of features, some of which are overlooked by Outlook and other typical email clients. You can connect it with most major email providers and expand communication beyond them through integrations with messaging platforms like WhatsApp and Telegram.This communication hub provides a detailed insight into your team’s performance and impact, as well as omnichannel messaging that lets you reach team members more easily. Front also offers analytics and reporting features that allow you to track activities and milestones. By using the platform’s Smart Rules, you can streamline your workflow and automate various tasks.Front is GDPR-compliant and offers various security measures like IP restrictions, but there’s no end-to-end encryption—the platform uses AES-256 for encryption at rest and TLS for encryption in transit.
Robust features beyond emailNo free plans or trials
Helpful analyticsExpensive tiers
Omnichannel messagingSubpar encryption protocols


Source: SparkWith over 14 million users worldwide, Spark is another popular alternative to Outlook. Like Mailbird, it provides a distraction-free zone and a clean interface suitable for beginners. The main caveat of using the platform is data collection, which could endanger your privacy.


Spark has a free plan, so individuals and small teams can leverage its features without commitments. If you want to upgrade, there are two plans to choose from:
  1. Premium Individual—$4.99/ month billed annually
  2. Premium Teams—$6.99/user per month billed annually

Pros and cons

Spark comes with many useful email organization features. It offers Priority and Pin functions that allow you to highlight important contacts and organize your inbox by senders. The Smart Inbox feature separates unread mail from read, real messages from ads, and pinned messages from unpinned.You can also organize messages into folders and use tags and flags, but you have to do it manually.One of the best things about Spark is its free plan. While somewhat limited in features, it lets you test out the environment and use most of the platform’s organization tools. The main drawback is limited storage, as you only get 5 GB for the whole team. Even if you upgrade to the highest tier, you only get 10 GB per user, which is low for a paid plan.As for security, Spark does offer E2EE, but it stores your data on its servers. In case of a breach, there’s still a risk of sensitive data spilling out.
Smart InboxStores data
Highly customizableLimited storage
Free version.

Skiff Mail

Source: Skiff MailSkiff Mail is a comprehensive email solution using advanced end-to-end encryption to ensure your information stays private and confidential. It has several advantages over other privacy-first providers and is suitable for personal and business use.


Skiff offers a robust free plan and three affordable paid tiers:
  1. Essential—From $3 per month
  2. Pro—From $8 per month
  3. Business—From $12 per month

Pros and cons

Skiff combines two separate keys to secure your online communication:
  • Public Key—Used for message encryption and shared between the sender and the recipient
  • Private Key—Safely stored on the user’s device and used for decryption
The platform prioritizes data privacy, so it does not store your login credentials and encryption keys. Emails and data you share will remain confidential, as not even Skiff’s team can access them.Skiff is an open-source platform, so its codebase is available to the public. You can check out the whitepaper for more information on Skiff’s security measures.The user interface is elegant and easy to navigate—all features are laid out intuitively to maximize efficiency.To let users communicate and share files anonymously, Skiff integrates with various crypto wallets, most notably:Skiff Mail offers a generous free version to ensure no important features are hidden behind a paywall. The free plan gets you the following:
  • Fast email and text search
  • 10 GB of storage
  • Four aliases
  • Auto reply
  • Undo Send
  • Folders & Labels
If you decide to upgrade, you can get up to:The downside that Skiff shares with other email services is that it can’t guarantee safety if a device is compromised by malware. Follow the best security practices to stay protected and retain control of your data.
Advanced end-to-end encryptionCan’t offer complete protection if the device is compromised by malware
Feature-rich free version.
Crypto integrations.

Get started with Skiff

You can create a free Skiff account in three simple steps:
  1. Go to the signup page
  2. Choose your username and password (you don’t need to leave any personal information to sign up)
  3. Explore Skiff Mail
When you sign up, you’ll get access to three additional end-to-end encrypted platforms:
  1. Skiff Pages for secure collaboration and document creation/editing
  2. Skiff Drive for cross-platform cloud storage in an end-to-end encrypted environment
  3. Skiff Calendar for staying organized and hosting private meetings

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