Dynamics 365 Outlook App vs the Dynamics 365 Outlook client, what’s the difference?



One of the real strengths of Microsoft CRM and Microsoft Dynamics CRM was the ability to work with your CRM through Outlook, almost perfectly. In fact, many of the sales implementations of Microsoft Dynamics CRM were successful due to this. As we know many sales people spend a large part of their working day managing communication with their clients and prospects.

The downside was that the Outlook client (correctly termed the Dynamics 365 Client for Outlook or Dynamics CRM Client for Outlook) was resource-greedy. (it was estimated to add 2GB of memory to the memory requirement of a computer.) It also requires the full Outlook thereby only working with desktop and laptop computers Of course more and more users are accessing their Dynamics 365 via a phone or a tablet – at least some of the time. It also became more difficult with the expansion of browser support from Internet Explorer only to all browsers in 2012.

So, for a number of reasons, the Outlook client, while loved by sales people – when it worked  – was the bane of the tech support staff.

By introducing the Outlook App, Microsoft addressed these problems. The app is a web-based tool and focuses on enabling managing of communication between users and prospects without giving full CRM functionality. Offline access is not permitted, although this poses less of a problem now than it would have been sixteen years ago when the Outlook Client first appeared.

Although both Outlook Client and the Outlook app work with Outlook, they have different functionality and footprints.

  • The Dynamics 365 App for Outlook is a Microsoft Office add-in that provides a Dynamics 365 assistant for Outlook desktop, web or mobile.
  • The Dynamics 365 Client for Outlook is a Windows application that provides all Dynamics 365 core functionality directly from Outlook.

This Outlook client was deprecated in the v9 release of Microsoft Dynamics 365, in April 2018. My e‑book about the deprecations and new features of v9 is here. However, due to user feedback that deprecation was rolled back in the following release.

Key features of the Outlook client and the app

These should help you find the right solution for your organisation and users. Remember – it is quite possible that you will need both and even that some users will require both.

Challenges with the Outlook App

  • It does not like more than one org of Dynamics 365 at a time
  • It has to be removed via Outlook

More information about the Outlook App for Microsoft Dynamics 365

As always, there is a pethora of information about the Outlook App. I have provided a few links here.

Overview of Dynamics 365 App for Outlook

Dynamics 365 App for Outlook User Guide

Deploy Dynamics 365 App for Outlook


Original Source see Gill Walker

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