Top 10 Email Programs
By Rebecca Burdick
Some email programs are available for multiple operating systems (OS), while others are available for only one particular OS. Smart phones or other devices have their own operating system and their own email clients. Email programs meant to be run in an Internet browser are only limited by the browser. As of 2009 most email was checked on a computer rather than on a smart device making most common email programs browser-based, PC, or Linux/Mac stand-alone clients.
Thunderbird is a free email client brought to you by Mozilla. It can be run on Windows-based, Linux-based, and Mac computers. Thunderbird will let you download your email from a number of online email providers like Gmail or Comcast Mail provided you have the IMAPI or POP3 settings, username, password, etc.. The software indexes your emails and lets you search through them for content. Additionally Thunderbird has "add-ons" that you can install to enhance your experience with the program. Email remains on your computer, so your Internet connection does not need to be constantly on.
Gmail is a browser-based email program provided to you by Google. It has a large amount of storage and a search engine. Gmail can be synched to email clients for multiple OS. The amount of storage on Gmail is constantly increasing.
Outlook is a paid email client by Microsoft. It comes bundled with the Microsoft Office Suite. It is designed for Microsoft Windows systems and has no support for any other OS. Businesses both large and small use Microsoft Outlook as their default email client. One of the reasons for this is that it comes bundled with their office productivity suite. Companies that have been using Outlook for many years have so much data, in the form of addresses, emails, contacts, etc., that it becomes very hard for them to switch to a new mail client.
Hotmail is Miscrosoft Network's (MSN) solution to free web-based email. Hotmail also has the ability to synch to email clients on multiple OS. It is particularly easy to sync Hotmail up to any Microsoft email client.
Outlook Express is a scaled-down free version of Microsoft Outlook that is built for the Windows OS. It retains a lot of functionality of Outlook, but in a smaller package both in disk usage and memory usage. It comes bundled with older versions of Internet Explorer and various versions of Microsoft Windows. With the release of Windows Vista, Outlook Express was replaced with Windows Mail, which was replaced with Windows Mail Live when Windows 7 was released.
Eudora is an email client made for Windows and Mac operating systems and is offered by Qualcomm. Eudora used to come in both a free and paid/premium version, but now is only available in the free version. Eudora has been used on many university campuses as the student default program.
Opera is a lightweight free fast email client offered by Opera. It will sync with many online email providers. The great thing about Opera is that it easily integrates RSS feeds as well.
Yahoo! Mail is another browser-based email program. Yahoo! Mail has the ability to synch email clients on at least the Windows OS. Yahoo! Mail can be integrated right into a Yahoo! home page.
Comcast Mail is another browser-based email program that allows you to retrieve emails sent to your Comcast email address provided that you are a Comcast customer. It will also sync into mutiple email clients and can still be checked from any Internet browser in the country.
Mulberry is a complex email client for multiple OS. It is complex, but it is also powerful. You have many choices and options, but you need to know how to use them all. It syncs with multiple online email servers.
- "E-mail for dummies"; John R. Levine, Carol Baroudi, Margy Levine Young, Arnold Reinhold; 1997
- "Better, Faster Email: Getting the Most Out of Email"; Joan Tunstall; 1999
Rebecca Burdick began her freelance writing career in 2007 and currently writes for several online publications. She specializes in small business bookkeeping and financial management. Burdick studied accounting and economics at Boise State University and University of California at Riverside.