Shared mailboxes in the Outlook mobile app

Edvard Wikström
Occasional Contributor

More and more customers use a phone as their primary email device. Are there any plans to add support for shared mailboxes in the mobile Outlook app?

98 Replies
Thanks for the feedback. We will share this with the Outlook mobile team.
Do you mind providing more info on the scenario? Is this for send/receive of email / messages with external customers (for example) or just reading of email alone? Is calendaring involved? There might be a way to accomplish but we'd need to understand a scenario a bit better.

Hi Edvard,


You can open the shared mailbox using IMAP using youremail@domain.com\sharedmailboxalias format for the login.

Typically our SMB clients have a shared company inbox to handle and collaborate around customer enquirers or other external requests.

Our current workaround is applying an exchange online license and adding a secondary account in each users mobile app.

For the record, this is probably the single biggest request I have heard for mobile access to Exchange since ActiveSync solved all the problems around user mailbox access in 2006... We are only 11 years on and Microsoft still contemplates what to do...

Our customers are happy with "Office 365 Groups", because, they have not only a "shared mailbox", they have a shared calendar and all files in one place.

@Michael Kirst-Neshva wrote:
Our customers are happy with "Office 365 Groups", because, they have not only a "shared mailbox", they have a shared calendar and all files in one place.

Everyone else would be happy as well, if only the folder structure behind the groups mailboxes would be visible/available for the end users. Alas it's not, and users are asking for Shared Mailbox access on Smartphones, where they have their existing incoming mails including folder structures :)

Ironically Microsoft did solve this problem - you can (still) add a shared mailbox with the OWA mobile app, which as you know was abandoned after the purchase of Accompli - but is staill available in the AppStores.  But with Outlook we are back to square-one on this, and I agree is probably the #1 missing feature people have wanted for years.

Same use case, we are a Small Business and we have the typical "info@" mailbox as an Exchange Online shared mailbox. Accessing it from mobile would be great for us.


Please, if you are interested vote the ideas on UserVoice:

Summing the two ideas we already are at more than 5.500 votes; hope the Outlook mobile team will get this covered soon!

After a lot of trying and creativity I have nailed it! Here's the solution to add Shared Mailboxes to your Outlook Mobile App for iOS :)


You have to add it as IMAP account, and use the Advanced Settings:


Name : whatever you want

E-mail:  sharedmailbox@domain.com



Host:  outlook.office365.com

Username:  your_primary_login@domain.com\sharedmailbox

Password:  your pass



Host:  smtp.office365.com:587

Username: your_primary_login@domain.com

Password:  your pass


So the most stupid and confusing issue here is that you have to add port number to the SMTP only. Also it's a bummer that the app doesn't give you a more detailed error when things are incorrect.


I hope this helps :)



No thanks to Microsoft, it really s*cks that they made it so difficult. My suggestion: add a "Add Office365 Shared Mailbox"-option.  

Thanks a lot Desiree!! Saved me today :)

We have so many customers screaming our for this option.

Unfortunatly this does not work anymore for the outlook app :( when adding the \ you cannot sign in anymore :(

It seems that indeed it asks to sign in as shared mailbox, which obviously it is not the case, as I have no such password
I think it happens when passwordus mistyped (or some other glitch)
Redone it all again and worked fine.
Pity there is no option to chose account type on start screen of Add Account, but in the end one can select IMAP

does this work if you have more than 1 shared mailbox?

and also the IMAP section would it be completed as below if the shared mailbox was called support:



Host:  outlook.office365.com

Username:  corey@domain.com\support

Password:  your pass

this is now working, but cant see the calendar for this shared mailbox any ideas?

This solution works with the nativ iOS mail app, but not with Outlook on iOS. It asks me in a popup to sign in to the account. obviously I don't have a password. When I change the account to the personal one, then Outlook sings into the main account.


Any solution for that?   

Thank you for posting this information. 

What version of the Outlook for iOS app are you using? Mine does not have an advanced options and the add account function rejects the form included in your post.

My organization is contemplating a move to Office365 however, lack of mobile access to shared mailboxes is a non-starter to that migration!!





all now working shared mailbox and seperate shared calendar, the only issue is we categorize our appointments with colours and these do not carry accross to the outlook app.


are you adding the shared account as an IMAP?

you add the account as normal but when it asks you for the password press back and you will now see you have an option to setup account manually.

Is this working for people on the Outlook iOS app or the default Apple iOS mail app? I cannot get it to accept my credentials on the actual MS Outlook iOS app?

It works with Outlook app.
If it does not work, as I stated above try to redo it, most likely typo

There is NOTHING to fix, because Outlook App on iOS works perfectly fine (using it daily)



Yeah you can use the Outlook app using IMAP settings for the Shared Mailbox - are you able to Send As the Shared Mailbox though? Does the Calendar appear for you too? Or did you have to add that in a different way?
Just checked and Calendar for Shared Mailbox during normal IMAP add account seems not to be added. Personally I do not care as I do not use Shared mailbox calendar , but that could be an issue
Sending from that mailbox works fine

Could you provide more details please? Thanks
Thank you!!!!!!
The shared mailbox shows up, but not the calendar. How do you add the calendar view?
How did you get the shared calendar to show up? Got the shared email but no calendar.

@Corey Wainwright wrote:

all now working shared mailbox and seperate shared calendar


Hey Corey, did you do anything differently to have 2 shared accounts?  I have 2 shared email addresses that I added as IMAP accounts via Exchange on iOS, following Desiree's awesome instructions. Even though both are set up exactly the same, only 1 will work at a time.  Did you use different port numbers or anything when you set up yours?



I did exactly how you advised, however it has added the shared mailbox within my current inbox with '\' separators. As a result, I now receive the below email every minute.



 Any idea how I can reverse this? Has anyone come across this before?


Appreciate any advise

Thanks very much.

It worked. I have two separate domain registered on office365 in one tenant with one mailbox license linked to the user in the first domain.

Created shared mailbox tu use the second domain and address.


After seting everyithing the shared mailbox appear in Outlook and OWA on the web.

using your guide i sucessfully set up also shared mailbox to be displayed in latest Outlook for Android.


Thanks again.


Funny that nobody noticed this...: since a couple of months (could be a year already), a shared mailbox also has a user object attached to it. Go to O365 admin center/Active users and you will see a 'dummy' user for every shared mailbox, with 'no license' status. Click it, and you get the usual fly-in/popup where there's a button to reset the user password. Use that, give it some password. Then go to Android/IOS outlook mobile app and use the e-mail address + just assigned password to add the shared mailbox as a seperate account. This way, you also get contacts + calendar, just as any regular mailbox.

Using IMAP will quite normally just give you mail, not calendar (or contacts) since it is only IMAP...

Technically, this is a good solution. Alas, you WILL need an Office license (officially) if you use the shared box that way.

I've just tested this and it works fine for me on my mobile phone without being licensed. It is therefore a solution to our problem; albeit not very secure. Once I give my users access to the shared mailbox user / pass, I forfeit ability to internally link who accessed the mailbox if and when it's mis-used.


Correct me if I'm wrong?


I achieved Bart's suggestion without being licensed. Interesting move by MS if I'm being honest. If you're looking to give users exchange-only access, you can dodge licensing by creating shared mailbox user instead. I was able to add the account to my iPhones Mail App and PC's Outlook 365 App and send/receive from the unlicensed user account.

How do you know this/where does it say so? A license is required when you go over 50GB but as long as you add the mailbox to the smartphone of a licensed person, you're not doing anything wrong I presume? It's MS fault we have to use these kind of bypasses, they can't blame us for trying to use the product for its intended purpose!

You are not wrong, this is indeed a security issue. The person(s) who has the password of the shared mailbox, has access no matter what you do to the rights for other users.

Fortunately, you can change the password of course. But it can be a management nightmare if for instance a shared mailbox has many users and you need to change the password because some user no longer should have access. Again, it's a nice solution but really only for stable environments (i.e. not frequently changing who has/should have access).

Yes, indeed... I was quite surprised to find it out. It actually happened after a support call because at some time I had noticed the special users in "active users" and then removed them because...well, things that don't need to be there, shouldn't be there, right? But after removing the user objects, the mailboxes were also deleted PLUS I couldn't even restore the mailbox. Thus I contacted support and then found out this user object requirement for shared mailboxes (need to restore the user object in order to restore the mailbox). So my eurocent fell...what if I use this password change button etc, etc... and thus the story began ;-)

For an exchange-only mailbox this is a great solution. To make sure I don't get legal troubles, I just make sure that every physical person (so a regular human being I mean) has a license and that shared mailboxes are always something like 'info' or 'invoices' etc, things that are easily recognised as something multiple users should/need access to.

Tanks very much for this info. I managed to make it work on android with your informations.

So my setup goes now like this:


I have two different domains registered in one admin console. The first one is user@domain1.si, the second one is info@domain2.com

Only one user mailbox licensed and added to the fisrt domain (user@domain1.si)

The second one is a shared mailbox (info@domain2.com)  linked to the second domain. (but with the status unlicensed)

In Outlook I can use both mailboxes to send and receive domain from both domain address.

IMAP setup for shard mailbox works on Andoid  but its more conveniant to do it like you said.

Under the active users I reset the password for a shared mailbox then on Android application I have added the second account (shared mailbox). For the username I have write the address in this way (info@onmicrosoft.com) with the selected password.

The account has been added and I can now receive and send mails from both domains (.si and .com)

Available both address: user@domain1.si, info@domain2.com

There is a drop down menu to select the desired domain / address . So both address are available now on OWA, Outlook and Outlook for Android. For now it seems to work fine .


Thanks again !


Best regards

Yes, you're very right... management of users with direct access to a mailbox becomes a nightmare, especially if you have to reset the password because someone has forgotten it. Then there's the "well you could just store the password somewhere", which heightens the risk of unauthorised access, etc. etc.


I am definitely the same, and feel that Office 365 is pretty good bang for buck (at least, for our relatively small instance anyway). I'll ensure that every physical person has a license attached to their user accounts, where other non-licensed accounts are the likes of contact@, careers@, support@, etc.


I still believe Microsoft need to implement a fix for this. I tried the 'other' mailbox addition to the default Mail App, to no avail. The set up process is cumbersome at best, for those that have managed to get it working. Bring back native shared mailbox support to the Outlook App!

After a lot of attempts I've noticed that when the user account has MFA enabled you're not able to add a shared mailbox via the IMAP way described in this thread.

Tried with: 

  • iOS mail app (MFA capable)
  • Android Nine app (MFA capable)
  • Outlook App, iOS and Android, (both also capable of doing MFA) 

But when it comes down to adding a shared mailbox using your personal user account's credentials which has MFA enabled. It's a no go. It keeps prompting to " check your username / password ". If you disable MFA for said user account, no problem & the mailbox is added.


Has anyone figured out how to add a shared mailbox on a mobile device using a user account that has MFA enabled ? 

I do not think it is currently possible, until MS gets they act together and build the support into the app. Shocking!

This was available in the message centre


Updated Features: Monthly feature updates for Office 2016 for Office 365
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Published On : 25 May 2018
The latest feature updates for Office 2016 for Office 365 are now available.
One of the benefits of Office 365 ProPlus is that Microsoft can provide new features for Office apps on a regular basis, through monthly updates.
How does this affect me?
This month’s update includes new feature updates, as well as other security and bug fixes. Here is a list of some of the new features available in the May update:
  • In Outlook, add multiple time zones to your calendar to easily see everyone's availability and pick a time that works for all.
  • Calendars shared from Outlook Desktop are now also available in Outlook Mobile.
  • In Word, split or join words, add a new line, or insert words using your pen.
  • Use your voice to create emails by simply dictating in Outlook, PowerPoint, and Word.
  • Collaborate more effectively by chatting with your co-authors without ever leaving PowerPoint, Excel, and Word.

John, I don't think what you've picked up is applicable - I read this as "people who've shared their calendar with you will appear in the Outlook mobile app". However, I suppose it's a small step forward in the sense that 'shared' access is slowly becoming available to mobile apps. Let's hope we get something soon for shared mailboxes.


I ended up giving direct access to a couple of my users - this is easy enough to manage for now... I don't want our business to grow and still have to manage shared mailbox access and keep asking that my directors accept the associated security risk.

  1. Create Shared Mailbox:

a. Open outlook.office365.com/ecp >> Recipients >> Shared

b. Click >> put in the required details >> add the user to whom you want to have FullAccess and Sends Permission.


c. Shared Mailbox is created successfully.



Shared mailbox showing in EAC



      2.  Every Shared Mailbox which is getting created in office365 have the identity created with the same Email address in Active user stating user which is unlicensed.

                       a.       Go to Admin Centre >> Active User

                       b.       Search for the shared mailbox which is created in Exchange admin center



User object created for the shared mailbox



        3.        Select the shared mailbox which you want to configure in Mobile device or Outlook client as the primary mailbox:

                        a.       Select shared mailbox user

                        b.       Click on Reset Password



c.       Uncheck the “Make this User change their password when they first sign in” and Select “Let me create the password”


            4.    Configure Shared mailbox in Android device:

                             a.        Go to Settings >> Add accounts


                              b.       Put Shared mailbox email address


                           c.       Put the same password which was reset and generated.


                          d.   While configuring it will ask you to redirect to office365 Autodiscover >> Click


                            e.   Once account is setup, you can see all the information for incoming server.


                              f.   Shared Mailbox configured successfully:


                                 g.       You can open from Google Mail app by clicking on Exchange option available there.


                                h. You will be able to see all the incoming emails from mobile device.


                                i.  We can also be able to send email from phone using shared mailbox email address.



Note: Microsoft Office365 support team will not support if you are not able to configure, Send/receive email from Phone devices using this method.

Points to remember:

  1. If users are getting synchronized through on premise AD, Password should be reset from AD and then it should be synchronized to cloud. To check you can try login to portal.office.com and use shared mailbox credential.
  2. If you are in Hybrid Environment, Create shared mailbox in on premise Exchange server and then migrate it to cloud, Once migrated convert User mailbox to Shared mailbox. (To make sure Autodiscover will work to configure this account)
  3. This might affect the security for the shared mailbox as password is created and we have to share password with multiple people in the organization and if it gets compromised we cannot check if the data is only shared within the users or outside the organization.
Hi Bart,

You are a life saver!
I've been struggling with this at a client for weeks/months and even MS is giving the imap solution.
I have reset password and just setup the account.

Bravo! I can now enjoy my weekend even earlier then expected 😉

Thanks, I follwed your instructions and was able to get my other mailboxes that are shared to be connected on my phone which is an android HTC U11.  But i have a problem now.  it does not allow me to save any new contacts from my phone -  i get the  various options such as phone, sim, my google account, my yahoo account but the minute i suggest my outlook account, it does not allow me to add.

is there anything that i am doing that is causing this problem?


Hi Bram, thanks - you're welcome! Geniet van je weekend!
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