One of the new features in Office 2013 is Hardware Graphics Acceleration which is supposed to improve performance. It doesn't always work well on older computers (and even some new ones). Symptoms include blurred text, cursor hangs randomly, and Outlook freezing for a few seconds (or longer).

I'm seeing a number of complaints where Outlook freezes or hangs and in many of the cases the issue when away when hardware graphics acceleration is disabled.

You can disable the use of Hardware Graphics Acceleration (for the entire Office 2013suite) from the Options dialog of any Office 2013 application. Each application that is open will need to be closed and restarted after changing the setting.

In Outlook 2013, go to File, Options, Advanced and select Disable Hardware Graphics Acceleration, near the bottom of the dialog.


That's it


Below is for IT Administrator only
=================================

This value is stored in the registry at

HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Office\15.0\Common\Graphics
DWORD: DisableHardwareAcceleration
Value: 1 to disable

Administrators can disable hardware graphics acceleration using Group Policy. It's located in the Group Policy Editor under Microsoft Office 2013 > Miscellaneous > Do not use hardware graphics acceleration.