Microsoft office Outlook Zoom – What You Need to Know!

There are several ways to improve readability in Microsoft Outlook. In this article, we’ll talk about one common and efficient way of doing it i.e. by using Outlook’s Zoom functionality.
Zoom in Outlook increases or decreases the text and images in your Outlook emails, contacts and calendar items. The Zoom functionality is available in a few different ways:

Reading Pane
In the reading pane (or the preview pane), you can change the Zoom by using either the Zoom Slider on the bottom right hand corner of the reading pane or by pressing the “Ctrl” + rolling your mouse wheel (Note that the mouse icon has to be positioned over the reading pane while you perform this action)

Message Window
When you open an email or calendar item to read in a separate window, the Zoom can be changed using the Zoom button which appears in the ribbon on top. The Zoom button launches the “Zoom Dialog” where you can adjust the Zoom setting. While creating an email, new calendar item or replying to an email, the zoom button is also available in the Outlook Ribbon. You can also change the zoom settings using “Ctrl” + rolling the mouse wheel while reading emails or composing emails in a new window (The mouse icon has to be positioned over the message area while you perform this action).

Zoom is preferred over changing the default fonts because zoom preserves the original formatting in your Outlook items. A lot of people recommend that you change the default font (that is over-ride the font used by the email sender) used in Outlook to a different and larger font to improve readability. This is not advisable since it removes the formatting (such as bold, underlining, italics, headers, etc) included in the original email message. For example, important points which were highlighted in the original email will be removed.

While using Zoom has great advantages in terms of readability, there is one main disadvantage to using it. The Zoom setting is not pervasive for reading existing emails. In the previous versions of Outlook (2003 and prior), you could save the Zoom settings permanently for incoming or existing emails. However, in Outlook 2007 and Outlook 2010, it is not possible to do so. This is because Microsoft decided to use MS Word as the default editor for MS Outlook in the later versions. A tight integration exists between MS Word and Outlook for reading existing emails, the side effect being loss of functionality that enabled persisting Zoom settings. So now, every time you read a message, you will need to change the Zoom level by following one of the methods described above.

John Abrams a Microsoft Office expert has been working in the technology industry from the last 7 year. As a technical expert, he has written technical blogs, white papers, and reviews for many websites such as

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