Given how many people do e-mail on their phones, shouldn’t
Android have a consistent, local app that rivals the
One of a many renouned apps for smartphones and
tablets won’t uncover adult on a “Most Popular” lists at iTunes or at Google Play. E-mail is a app, and it’s built into a devices. Doing e-mail on a iPhone or a iPad is a pleasure. E-mail on Android phones and tablets is a unsatisfactory crapshoot. That should change.
Pew Internet reported last year that e-mail was a fourth-most renouned activity among smartphone owners in a U.S., finished by 76 percent of them. E-mail was kick usually by texting, holding pictures, and promulgation cinema and video. No doubt some of that promulgation was finished around e-mail.
ComScore reported that for a final entertain of 2011, e-mail was a third-most renouned activity on underline and smartphones in a US, finished by 41 percent of mobile users, again entrance after texting and holding pictures.
Given this most usage, you’d cruise that a e-mail apps on a phones and tablets would get a lot of courtesy by their developers to work well. With Apple’s iOS operating system used by a iPhone and a iPad, I’ve found this to be a case. With Android, that is corroborated by Google, a e-mail app feels like an afterthought.
The biggest emanate altogether is that it feels like there is no local Android e-mail app. Each device builder seems to use a possess app. Even a same Android manufacturer, such as Samsung, will have e-mail apps that act differently from phone to phone.
I’ll go on a small debate of how Android falls down contra iOS below, in hopes that someone–anyone–at Google will solve a problem. we had one Googler privately ask me for this (you know who we are), so fingers-crossed that it competence make for some changes.
Let me start with a fun that is doing e-mail on a iPad:
The perspective above is what we get when holding a iPad in landscape position. On a left, my in-box. If we click on any e-mail summary listed there, a summary is displayed on a right in a reading pane. Nice.
Even nicer is when we go into “edit” mode in my in-box. Do that, and we can daub any summary to make it arrangement in a reading pane. As we daub additional messages, they start to “pile up” on a preview side, as a screenshot above shows. It’s an easy approach to slick by many low-priority e-mails that we expected wish to delete. When finished, pull “Archive,” and divided they go.
Now cruise what we get on my Asus Transformer Prime tablet, that runs a latest Android 4 handling system:
As with a iPad, we can perspective my in-box on a left and preview e-mails on a right. Excellent! But distinct a iPad, there’s no discerning preview-and-archive feature. If you’ve never used this, it competence not seem like a large deal. But once we have, we know what an measureless time saver it can be–and expected wish Android had it, as well.
Still, we could slick down a list in my in-box and daub a checkboxes for e-mails that we wish to fast delete. But check boxes like that aren’t always customary in other Android e-mail apps. Nor does it residence another pet peeve, how “conversation view” is mostly missing.
Let’s get conversational
Given that Google’s Gmail use helped popularize a thought of observation e-mail by review or topic, rather than simply by date received, you’d cruise a review perspective underline would be customary for Android phones. It’s not. Consider:
On a left is e-mail from my iPhone. At a top, 3 e-mails from a mailing list I’m on are total into a singular review (that’s given a series 3 is shown to a right). At a bottom is another conversation, between people we work with during Search Engine Land, articulate about how a site appeared on a Rachel Maddow uncover (we were flattering excited). Again, 3 conflicting e-mails were total into a singular conversation
In a center is how my same in-box seemed on a Droid Bionic phone that Motorola is now lending me for testing. Like a iPhone, it offers a review view. It combines all a messages from a mailing list I’m on only like a iPhone does. That’s given we have a singular arrow going true across. One summary from a staff contention isn’t total with a other two, that is given a bottom arrow splits into two. Still, it does a flattering good job. In other instances, a Bionic competence scrupulously mix conversations that a iPhone competence miss.
On a right is my same in-box again, this time as it seemed on a Galaxy Nexus that we own. It has no review view. As a result, my mailing list contention is so widespread out that dual in a review don’t seem unless we corkscrew down. That’s given we have those dual arrows going down a page. The staff contention is also damaged up, with dual messages visibile as a dual arrows uncover while a third is off a screen.
So most inconsistency
You competence be meditative that a differences are due to a fact that a Droid Bionic runs Android 2.3 while a Galaxy Nexus runs Android 4.0. That’s not it. Different Android versions don’t control how a Android e-mail app works. Different handset makers do.
Samsung creates a Galaxy Nexus, that lacks a review view. Samsung also creates a Galaxy S II Skyrocket that we own, an Android 2.3 phone that does have review view. Samsung also creates a Droid Charge, a Android 2.3 phone we had before we altered to a Galaxy Nexus. It has review view, like a Skyrocket. However, it differs in other ways.
With a Droid Charge, a tick-box appears subsequent to any e-mail summary in your in-box, identical to how both Android in-boxes shown above appear. You can simply undo e-mails by ticking a boxes and pulling a undo button. With a Skyrocket, we have to do a opposite. You name a menu to exhibit a undo button, afterwards pulling that creates a tick-boxes appear. After picking what we wish to trash, we afterwards go behind to a undo symbol and pull it again. That routine slows things down.
But wait, there’s more! With a Droid Charge, undo an e-mail you’re reading, and we go behind to your in-box list. we cite instead to have a subsequent e-mail “below” what we was reading load. That saves time. Motorola’s Droid Bionic has this same problem. In contrast, Samsung’s Galaxy S II does bucket a summary below. The Galaxy Nexus lets we select if we wish to go to an comparison e-mail that’s subsequent what we were reading, a newer one above or behind to a in-box list. Why don’t they all have these choices?
There are nonetheless some-more infuriating problems. The Galaxy Nexus (as does a Transformer Prime) has respond buttons in a e-mails that corkscrew off a screen, creation we rubbish time going behind adult if we wish to send a response. My review of a Galaxy Nexus explains this some-more and some other e-mail problems.
No, a Gmail app is not a solution
One reason we think that a Android e-mail app gets ignored is that Google offers a possess Gmail app for Android. Surely that covers everything! In fact, a Android site features Gmail as an app and creates no discuss of a e-mail app during all.
Certainly when we protest about a bad e-mail knowledge on Android, we infrequently hear from other Android users that we should only use a Gmail app. But a Gmail app not a answer. Not everybody uses Gmail. Not everybody likes how Gmail blends all messages in a review into a singular view. Sometimes, we wish to dump out some of a review yet not all of it.
Speaking of Gmail, it would be unequivocally good if Android e-mail apps could commend a Google Apps account–which is fundamentally Gmail yet regulating your possess domain–and automatically configure this correctly. The iPhone and iPad conduct it. Even Windows Phone manages it. But a e-mail apps on Android phones fundamentally ask me to manually adjust my IMAP and SMTP settings.
I’ve been by Google Play (formerly Android Market) in hopes of anticipating a good, third-party resolution to my Android e-mail woes. So far, I’ve come adult short.
K-9 Mail is a free, renouned choice with many options yet lacks review view.
Enhanced E-mail was one of a apps that Amazon gives divided any day for giveaway as partial of a possess Android app store. I’m blissful we didn’t compensate a $10 list price, given while it has many options like K-9, review perspective doesn’t seem to be one of them.
Mail Droid, that is free, does have review perspective and seems to work OK, yet deletion an e-mail that you’re reading takes we behind to a in-box. If there’s a environment to change this, I’m not anticipating it. Also, a ensign ads during a bottom of my in-box feel intrusive. Paying $18 to get absolved of them around a pro version feels a bit steep.
Know a good app I’ve missed? I’d adore to hear recommendations in a comments.
Please make a good, local app
Of course, we shouldn’t have to spin to a third-party app, done by companies I’m not informed with. Do we trust their products with my e-mail? It’s substantially fine, yet it would be so most improved to have a local app that works well.
I like my Android phone for many reasons, generally for glorious Google Voice integration, built-in GPS and 4G LTE speed, all of that a iPhone lacks. But we find myself dreading doing e-mail on a Galaxy Nexus, given a knowledge is so bad compared to my aged Droid Charge, most reduction my iPhone 4S.
I’d like to see Android boat with a improved local app, one that rivals a facilities that we can find in iOS. Or even Windows Phone, for that matter, that does have review view. Pity deletion an e-mail sends we behind to a in-box when regulating Windows Phone, though.
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