Home > Rumors > Screenshot Comparison: Outlook, Evolution, Kontact Screenshot Comparison: Outlook, Evolution, Kontact Submitted by anonymous 2005-11-04 Rumors 17 Comments “This is the second of a two-part e-mail client comparison. In Part 1 our comparison included Outlook Express 6.0 and Thunderbird 1.0. In Part 2 we are comparing the groupware suites Outlook 2003, Evolution 188.8.131.52 and Kontact 1.1.” About The Author Thom Holwerda Follow me on Twitter @thomholwerda 17 Comments 2005-11-04 10:02 pm I like how outlook is not using the much nicer(though slower) word editor. Also is it just me, or does Kontact look amateurish compared to the other two 2005-11-05 2:50 am Wrawrat Not only its look… It’s usability hell. Instead of fanboying a certain DE and adding fuel to bonfires, I am using KDE and GNOME on two different computers and while I am quite comfortable with both, I just can’t get used to Kontact. Just finding how to change some preferences isn’t trivial. To be fair, I remember using the standalone Kmail about two years ago and while it had its quirks, it was quite usable. The configuration and “tweakability” features are #1, but the default interface could definitely get streamlined for folks that are content with default settings. Most people shouldn’t have to mess with options before using it. Some people dislike Evolution because its widgets are big, but they are perfect on high resolutions (in my case, 1400×1050). I have used Outlook XP for about two years and it’s nothing really special… A small anecdote: our faculty has discouraged the use of Outlook on its computers in favour of Eudora because of its bumpy security track. While it got huge improved lately, I believe it’s a perfect example on how look & feel isn’t the only thing that matters. Those people are still avoiding the 2003 version. Like the old The Who song: “Won’t get fooled again”. 2005-11-04 10:06 pm What’s the point??? 2005-11-05 12:45 am rm6990 What’s the point??? So that the vast majority of computer users that choose their software based on the UI (as opposed to features, stability, etc) can see what the programs look like. 2005-11-04 10:30 pm I see Evolution as the clear winner. 2005-11-04 11:09 pm CrazyDude0 Outlook is far superior than other two. In UI as well as features. For a simple comparison, look at the contact screen of both evolution and outlook, evolution looks like a hotch potch mess….yukk Open source guys will never know how to design a clean interface…. 2005-11-04 11:12 pm > Outlook is far superior than other two. In UI as well as features. Put down the crack pipe. Outlook is harder to use and has a *lot* less features than Evolution or Kontact/Kmail in terms of supported servers, standards and extensibility. 2005-11-05 9:14 pm >Put down the crack pipe. Outlook is harder to use and >has a *lot* less features than Evolution or >Kontact/Kmail in terms of supported servers, standards >and extensibility. What standards and extensibility? Outlook does not support pop3/imap/imap ssl,apop??? No, it does. 2005-11-06 9:04 am > What standards and extensibility? Outlook does not support pop3/imap/imap ssl,apop??? No, it does. Does Outlook support nntp (for usenet news) then? Although news is not email but nowadays all major mail clients provide nntp support, expcept Outlook. Funny that the Outlook Express even supports reading news. It makes sense to combine email and news reading into one program because they are very similiar from a user point of view. That is a must-have feature for me. And that is why I don’t use Outlook. KB 2005-11-05 12:00 am Since neither of the two mentioned alternatives has a Windows version. Nonetheless, more articles like these are sorely needed – not just screenshots, but a in-depth feature-for-feature comparison of apps, and not by someone who’s as non-biased as possible (which certainly isn’t this guy). If anything will get some Windows power users interested, that certainly wood. 2005-11-05 1:52 am sanctus I see the design originality. Well, still prefer when apps are standalone and “really” interacts. Not only between the mail application (mail-contact-calender-todo), but with every application. well, I’ll check if I have mail in my mail.app . 2005-11-05 5:21 am phoenix Well, still prefer when apps are standalone and “really” interacts. Not only between the mail application (mail-contact-calender-todo), but with every application. Which is exactly how Kontact works. Kontact is nothing more than a shell around KMail, Kaddressbook, Knotes, Kalarm, and a bunch of other KDE apps. Each app can be used as a standalone app, simply by starting them separately. Or, you can start Kontact, and it will start the other apps as needed. Using Settings -> Select components, you can choose what appears in the vertical icon bar down the left-hand side. IMO, this is how it should be done. If you want to use a single window interface, you can (Kontact). If you want to use a multi-window interface, you can (start each app). All using the same applications. 2005-11-05 2:03 am I have to use outlook at work and I hate it. It is like they took every standard windows ui convention and did the opposite. They do not respect the standard windows keyboard shortcuts. Little things like ctrl-f not being find drive me up the wall. F3 will search your inbox, but it is slow as hell. Thunderbird can do the same searches instantly. I have yet to figure out how to search inside an email message, ctrl-f does its own crack and F3 doesn’t respond. I have to copy the text into notepad to search. And don’t get me started on the preferences dialogs. The points when it breaks into a wizard for no reason forcing you to go “next, next, next, edit existing data” to change one setting. And yes for the love of god, yes I really do want to send the message as plain text. That is why I selected send as text in my preferences, stop switching back to html. Sorry about that, I just had to vent a little. If thunderbird integrated better with calendar stuff like sunbird I would never touch outlook again. I haven’t tried kontact, but evolution also sucks because it copies the non standard ui crack that outlook has. 2005-11-05 2:57 am Wrawrat I haven’t tried kontact, but evolution also sucks because it copies the non standard ui crack that outlook has. Personally, I find that Evolution integrates to GNOME in a better way than Outlook to Windows. At least the widgets are not too different. Unfortunately, it seems to have some oddities with IMAPS (like asking for the validity of a SSL certificate ad eternam and not showing the Inbox of a certain account) and some stability issues. Of course, YMMV for the latter, I just don’t seem to have luck with Linux. Every distro I have tried got stability issues with GUI applications. But that’s something debatable elsewhere… 2005-11-05 4:01 am Have to agree with you there. Although Outlook 2003 is a big improvement over previous versions, its usability needs some serious work. For example, does anybody on this board know how to set a custom view and then apply that to all mailbox folders? I searched Usenet and found an command-line switch (can’t remember specifically the name), but never could get it to work. Really, something as simply as this shouldn’t be that damn complicated. 2005-11-05 9:30 am butters yeah, this opensourceversus website kinda sucks, but most of what it shows comes down to this key point: that the FOSS alternatives are all squarely up to the task of competing with Microsoft client applications on the basis of usability. Not that Evolution or Kontact or Thunderbird are clearly better designed than–or drop-in replacements for–the Microsoft mainstays, but that these FOSS client applications aren’t laughably noncompetitive (anymore). These comparisons serve to refute an above poster’s line: “Open source guys will never know how to design a clean interface….” All of those screenshots (Evolution and Kontact) look pretty clean to me, and for the rest of you it’s a matter of personal experience and opinion. 2005-11-05 1:01 pm Mage66 I’ve been using Eudora as my Mail Client on my PC’s for about 10 years now. And while Eudora is ugly, it offers really good usability. I tried switching to Thunderbird, and did a total immersion in it. It was AWFUL! Thunderbird just isn’t as polished as Eudora is. It’s not as easy for me to manage my MANY folders of mail. Mail on the Mac is a little better than Thunderbird, but not much. I’ve used Evolution on my Linspire box, and that works fine. I don’t have problems with it. I could easily move to Linspire for my everyday work and not miss a beat. I’m trying to move more and more away from Windows XP to MacOS X. The only things I’d be missing are my favorite game and my Macro Program. But, for me… The bottom line isn’t GUI. It’s day to day usability.