What is Outlook PWA? [Is it better than Outlook Application]

Last Updated on June 16, 2023 by Amit Bansal

Progressive Web Apps are apps that run in browsers for delivering more better user experiences. It’s a Private Window.

Private Window is the term used in Microsoft Outlook to refer to the option that allows you to view the Inbox, Outbox, Deleted Items, Drafts, or Sent Items of a different user.

What is Outlook PWA?

Outlook PWA is a new web application format introduced by Microsoft. This format allows developers to build native applications using HTML5, CSS3, and JavaScript.

The main advantage of this approach is that it enables developers to create apps that look and behave exactly like their desktop counterparts.

In order to provide a seamless experience across devices, Microsoft has developed several technologies such as Windows Runtime (WinRT), Universal Windows Platform (UWP), and XAML. These technologies allow developers to build cross-platform applications.

With these technologies, developers can now build powerful mobile apps that run on both iOS and Android platforms.

They can also target multiple form factors, including desktops, laptops, tablets, smartphones, and even wearables.

Outlook PWA is an alternative to the Outlook web application, the user does not browse and open the email account, it would be operated directly just like the Outlook desktop application.

How Outlook PWA works?

Outlook PWA works by sending a user’s email and calendar items to the Microsoft cloud, where those resources are accessible from any device.

Overview of Outlook PWA

Definition of Progressive Web App (PWA)

Progressive Web Apps (PWAs) are applications built using web technologies that can be installed and run on various devices from a single codebase.

PWAs provide native-like experiences to users on supporting devices, adapting to the capabilities of each device. They can also run in web browsers, just like websites.

Microsoft’s Integration with PWA

Microsoft has transformed its Outlook.com and Outlook for the Web email services into a Progressive Web App (PWA).

This integration enables Outlook users to install the web app on multiple platforms, such as Windows, macOS, Chrome OS, and others that natively support PWAs.

By using the new Microsoft Edge, users can install the Outlook PWA by signing in to their Outlook on the web or Outlook.com account, selecting “Settings and more” at the top, and choosing “Apps >> Install this site as an app“.

This offers a convenient stand-alone “app” experience that can be launched without first opening a browser and navigating to the Outlook online site.

In conclusion, Outlook PWA is Microsoft’s latest innovation to improve user experience and provide a convenient, native-like application for accessing Outlook on various platforms.

Supported Platforms and Browsers

As we dive into the world of Outlook PWA, it’s essential to understand the supported platforms and browsers to ensure the best user experience.

In this section, we will discuss the compatibility of Outlook PWA with various web browsers, including Microsoft Edge and Google Chrome, Safari and Firefox, and Opera and Brave.

Microsoft Edge and Google Chrome

Outlook PWA functions seamlessly on both Microsoft Edge and Google Chrome. These browsers allow users to install the site as an app, providing a native-like experience.

For Windows 11 and Windows 10 users, Microsoft Edge, and Google Chrome are among the supported browsers for Outlook on the web and Outlook.com.

Safari and Firefox

Apple Safari and Mozilla Firefox are also compatible with Outlook PWA.

Outlook on the web and Outlook.com work well with Safari on MacOS and with Firefox on both Windows and MacOS.

With Safari and Firefox, users can get the most out of Outlook PWA, although some features might be unavailable for Linux users using Firefox as their web browser.

Opera and Brave

While our search results do not provide specific information on Outlook PWA support for Opera and Brave browsers, it is worth noting that both browsers are built on the Chromium platform, just like Google Chrome.

Since Outlook PWA is compatible with Chrome, there is a strong possibility that it might work well with Opera and Brave.

However, users may encounter some limitations or need workarounds when using these browsers for Outlook PWA.

How to install Outlook Progressive Web Apps (PWA)?

  • Open Outlook web (Outlook.com).
  • Click on the Install icon in the address bar. (Ref: Image below)
How to install Outlook PWA

In case you are using the Microsoft Edge browser and the makeover is slightly different.

How to install Outlook PWA Edge
  • Click on the Install button from the popup that will appear to ask if you want to install the application.

An app will be installed on your local machine and will launch immediately. You can run the app offline and use functions that aren’t available on the web.

Outlook Progressive Web Apps icon is also installed at your default location, you can open PWA directly from there, or you can also pin and lunch from the home screen to the Start Menu or Taskbar.

Does Progressive Web Apps Offline Mode?

OWA as well as OPWA did not work in the offline mode. So, you’ll need to work on that.

Currently, the Outlook application is the only platform, where the user easily handles all features except sending or receiving the email message, which really needs an internet connection.

Outlook PWA comes with additional features as compared to Outlook Web App (OWA).

Steps to Uninstall Outlook PWA

Outlook.com offers a PWA in the form of Outlook Mail, which allows users to access all of their emails right from their browsers without opening the Outlook app.

Still, if you are not comfortable with PWA, you can remove Outlook PWA with just a click, First, open the app you want to remove.

Click ellipses on the top right corner of the screen and click ‘Uninstall Outlook (PWA)…‘.

Uninstall Outlook PWA

Final confirmation in the form of the dialog box, click remove.

Remove Outlook PWA

That will uninstall Outlook PWA from your system.

More to Known

Features of Outlook PWA are like Outlook web. But PWA runs some additional features and has access to app features too:

  • A PWA can still work when the device is offline.
  • Outlook PWA can be installed on the operating system.
  • PWA supports push notifications.
  • PWAs can access hardware features.
  • Outlook PWA must be added to the start menu and pinned to the Taskbar.

Outlook Desktop App vs Outlook PWA

When it comes to Outlook, users have two main options to choose from: the desktop app and the Progressive Web App (PWA).

In this section, we will compare the two options in terms of functionality, offline access, notifications, pros and cons, and installation.


The desktop app offers more advanced features than the PWA, such as the ability to work with multiple Exchange accounts, advanced search options, and more customization options.

However, the PWA offers a simpler and more streamlined interface, making it easier to use for those who don’t need the advanced features.

Offline Access

One of the main advantages of the desktop app is that it can be used offline, meaning that you can access your emails and calendar even when you don’t have an internet connection.

The PWA, on the other hand, requires an internet connection to function.


Both the desktop app and the PWA offer notifications, but the desktop app offers more advanced options for customizing and managing notifications.

With the desktop app, you can set up different notification sounds for different types of messages, and you can also turn off notifications for specific email threads.

The PWA, on the other hand, offers more basic notification options.

Pros and Cons

Each option has its pros and cons. The desktop app is more feature-rich and offers more advanced functionality, but it requires installation and can only be used on Windows devices.

The PWA, on the other hand, is simpler to use and can be accessed from any device with a web browser, but it lacks some of the advanced features of the desktop app.


The desktop app requires installation on your computer, which can take up valuable storage space and may require updates from time to time.

The PWA, on the other hand, can be accessed directly from your web browser, without the need for installation.

In conclusion, the choice between the desktop app and the PWA depends on your individual needs.

If you require advanced features and offline access, the desktop app may be the better option for you.

If you need a simpler and more streamlined interface, and the ability to access your emails and calendar from any device with a web browser, the PWA may be the better option.

Outlook Web App vs Outlook PWA

When it comes to using Outlook, there are two main options: the Outlook Web App (OWA) and the Outlook Progressive Web App (PWA).

Both offer similar functionality, but there are some differences in terms of platform support, user experience, and integration.

Platform Support

The Outlook Web App is accessible through a web browser on any device, regardless of the operating system.

It is supported on all major browsers, including Chrome, Firefox, Safari, and Edge. On the other hand, the Outlook PWA is only available on Google Chrome and Microsoft Edge.

If you primarily use a different browser, the OWA may be a better option for you.

User Experience

The user experience of the Outlook PWA is designed to be more similar to the desktop app, with a familiar layout and navigation.

It also offers some additional features, such as the ability to work offline and receive desktop notifications.

However, the OWA is still a fully functional email client with a clean and easy-to-use interface.

The choice between the two may come down to personal preference and the specific features you need.


One advantage of Outlook PWA is its ability to integrate with other websites and apps.

For example, you can use it to access your Google Drive files or add events to your Google Calendar.

This makes it a more versatile tool for managing your work and personal life. The OWA, on the other hand, is more focused on email and calendar functionality, with fewer integration options.

In conclusion, both the Outlook Web App and the Outlook PWA have their strengths and weaknesses.

The OWA is more widely accessible across different platforms, while the PWA offers a more desktop-like user experience and greater integration options.

Ultimately, the choice between the two will depend on your specific needs and preferences.

Final Words (Conclusion)

In conclusion, if you’re looking to improve your performance or change your perspective, I’ve got some suggestions. Design a web-based app that meets a need.

Create something of real value for others. Experiment with new ways of doing things. Educate yourself and seek to learn.

In this article, we have explored the differences between Outlook PWA and Outlook.

We have seen that Outlook PWA offers some unique advantages over Outlook, including better integration with other Office products and the ability to install the app on multiple platforms, including macOS and Chrome OS.

However, we have also seen that Outlook PWA is not without its limitations.

For example, it does not have all of the same features as the desktop version of Outlook, and it may not be as well-suited for power users who need advanced functionality.

Overall, we believe that the choice between Outlook PWA and Outlook will depend on your specific needs and preferences.

If you value the ability to access your email from any device and want a simple, streamlined email client, then Outlook PWA may be the right choice for you.

On the other hand, if you require more advanced features and want a more robust email client, then Outlook may be the better option.

Regardless of which option you choose, we recommend taking some time to explore the various features and capabilities of each app.

Whether you are using Outlook PWA or Outlook, there are many ways to customize and optimize your email experience, from using keyboard shortcuts to setting up filters and rules.

In conclusion, both Outlook PWA and Outlook are powerful and versatile email clients that can help you stay organized and productive.

With the right setup and configuration, you can make either app work for you and your specific needs.

So, whether you are using a desktop computer, a laptop, or a mobile device, we encourage you to explore the world of Outlook and find the email client that works best for you.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Here are some frequently asked questions about Outlook PWA and Outlook:

What does PWA stand for in Outlook?

PWA stands for “Progressive Web Application”. A progressive web application is an app built with modern web technologies such as service workers, HTML5 APIs, and Progressive Enhancement.

Where can I use Outlook PWA?

You can use Outlook PWA on Android, iOS, and Windows 10 devices (use them on devices like laptops, desktops, smartphones, phablets, tablets, and more).

What is Outlook PWA?

Outlook PWA stands for Progressive Web App. It is a web application that can have the look and feel of a native desktop application.

The web browser is offering to turn the Outlook Web service into a stand-alone “app” that you can launch without first having to launch the browser and navigate to the Outlook online site.

It’s a convenient thing and is safe to do.

What is the difference between Outlook PWA and Outlook?

Outlook PWA is a web application that can be accessed through a web browser, while Outlook is a full-featured email and calendar app that is optimized for PCs and laptops.

Outlook PWA is a basic Progressive Web App (PWA) that offers a streamlined version of Outlook’s features, while Outlook has all the advanced features and capabilities of email, such as scheduling and task management, rich formatting, and mailbox rules.

Can I use Outlook PWA instead of Outlook?

Yes, you can use Outlook PWA instead of Outlook if you prefer a streamlined version of Outlook’s features.

However, if you’re a heavy email and calendar user, and you want all the advanced features and capabilities of email, such as scheduling and task management, rich formatting, or mailbox rules, Outlook is the best choice for you.

Can I use Outlook PWA offline?

Yes, you can use Outlook PWA offline if you have enabled offline access in your web browser.

However, some features may not be available when you’re offline, such as sending and receiving emails.

Can I access other email accounts through Outlook PWA?

No, you cannot access other email accounts through Outlook PWA.

Outlook allows you to set up other accounts such as Gmail or Outlook.com accounts, while Outlook PWA does not because Gmail and Outlook.com have their own web interfaces.

Which one is better: Outlook PWA or Outlook?

It depends on your preferences and needs. If you prefer a streamlined version of Outlook’s features and want to access it through a web browser, Outlook PWA is a good choice.

However, if you’re a heavy email and calendar user and want all the advanced features and capabilities of email, such as scheduling and task management, rich formatting, or mailbox rules, Outlook is the best choice for you.

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Amit Bansal

Hello, my name is Amit Kumar Bansal, and I am the founder of MailSmartly.com. Through this blog, I focus on Microsoft Outlook, offering insightful and informative content. Additionally, I produce educational videos on YouTube to further enhance the understanding of my audience. visit my YouTube Channel

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1 thought on “What is Outlook PWA? [Is it better than Outlook Application]”

  1. Thank you for explaining Outlook PWA so well. It is very good of you to publish such helpful information, and your technical understanding is exceptional.




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