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As of December 22, 2017, Microsoft Office 365 has completely replaced the clutter folder for email with the focused and other views for the inbox.

What this means for you is that if you were using clutter, it will no longer exist as a separate folder and any items that were previously destined for the clutter folder, will now remain in the inbox but will show up with under the view of ‘other’.

The default view of ‘focused’ will now contain your important emails and the ‘other’ view will be a view of emails determined to be less important.

This feature of focused or clutter has existed since November 11, 2014, but not all users have noticed this experience. Over the past few weeks, more and more users have had this feature added to their Outlook view.

Why was this introduced?

The clutter feature added a separate folder that had to be checked. If important emails were inadvertently directed to the clutter folder, they potentially could have gotten missed. Obviously, there were a lot of people that didn’t like this feature.

With the focused/other views, the clutter feature has been changed into a view of items that are now not moved but all remain in the inbox. This view can be turned on or off.

How to Turn On or Off the Focused Inbox

This feature can be turned off for different platforms following this article.

In most cases in Outlook,

  • Select the View tab.
  • Select Show Focused Inbox.

If the ‘Show Focused Inbox’ is turned off, the Focused and Other tabs will disappear from the top of your mailbox. If it’s turned on, they will be shown again.

For Outlook Web App on the web

  • Select>Display settings>Focused Inbox.
  • Under When email is received, select Don’t sort messages.
  • Click OK


What to do for a mobile phone?

In my specific case, I had been using the default mail application ‘Samsung Mail; on my Galaxy phone. It had worked well when I was using the clutter feature. Now, with the removal of clutter, suddenly my phone started getting alerts for every new email. With this happening several times per minute, I began getting quite annoyed.

Since there are so many different email applications for mobile devices available, the most universal ‘cure’ for getting the focused/other features to work the same on your phone is to download the Microsoft Outlook from either the Play Store for Android or in the App Store for Apple.

The mobile Microsoft Outlook app performs similarly to your desktop application or your Outlook Web App.