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Email app for off line use

Discussion in 'Android Apps & Games' started by roger android, Sep 2, 2019.

  1. roger android

    roger android Lurker
    Thread Starter

    Does anyone know of an email app that can work completely off line when needed, as follows:

    (1) when connected to WiFi, the ap automatically downloads ALL emails (including attachments) in all IMAP folders on the server and stores them in my device (compressed to save space);
    (2) when no WiFi available, only mobile internet, does the same but limits the size of each email downloaded to a configurable maximum (so always loads text in email, but only downloads attachments and embedded photos up to the maximum specified by myself);
    (3) can search through the current folder, or when requested, through all folders, blisteringly fast, as it is searching through the stored emails not searching on the server (searches can be specified as any combination of subject, sender, recipients, body);
    (4) Allows deletion of emails (a) server copy only (b) downloaded copy only (c) both, as specified when deleting.

    I have tried lots of email apps and even those that say they download copies of emails for off line use don't do (1) to(4). All apps I have tried only download a subset of emails, not back to the beginning of time, and if I go to another folder I have to refresh the download; and all apps I have tried search the server, and this is very slow. [Windows desktop Thunderbird comes close to (1) and (3), searches are lightning fast through 10s of thousands of emails going back many years - but no Android version.]

    Thanks for suggestions,


  2. Best Answer:
    Post #3 by ocnbrze, Sep 2, 2019 (1 points)
  3. Dannydet

    Dannydet Extreme Android User

    So which email apps have you tried?
    Without that info its hard to help
  4. ocnbrze

    ocnbrze DON'T PANIC!!!!!!!!!

    are there really email apps that work off line? to me this does not make any sense. emails that are automatically downloaded will eventually take up room on your device.
    Dannydet likes this.
  5. dvhttn

    dvhttn Android Expert

    Why does it not make any sense? Emails take up space locally? How much space do your emails take up? Most phones have mant GB of data storage, add in sd cards and most have ample. *IF* they haven't then no need to download them all, just use an imap email account and don't download.

    As for why, lots of people may want to write all their email replies when they don't have any signal. If the email to be replied to is not on their phone how can they do that? I also want to be able to search through all my saved emails for various reasons (probably the reason I saved the emails in the first place!) whenever I want and not when a wifi/mobile signal dictates.

    I'm pretty certain that K9 will allow this but their folder class convention is not that intuitive. Fairemail will also do this but you have to load folder by folder - the author won't set it up so you can download a folder and all sub-folders as one (which is my setup).

    So, I would also like to have this ability but in an easy to use fashion.
  6. mikedt

    mikedt 你好

    Quite frankly the only email software I've seen that had a specific off-line mode, was really old POP clients from the days of dial-up net access. When staying online would cost you real $$$. They would get all the unread emails, including contents, and any replies you made would be sent when you next dialled out and connected.
    ocnbrze and Dannydet like this.
  7. Hadron

    Hadron Smoke me a kipper...
    VIP Member

    No, Thunderbird has an offline option. I use it when I want to read or draft emails when I'm off network (it stops it bothering me with messages about not being able to contact a server or save drafts to it) or when I just want to be able to consult the archive without interruptions from incoming mail. But Thunderbird is a more serious tool than any Android email client (the ability to have multiple composition windows and multiple email accounts open simultaneously is not one any Android app I've seen comes close to, and a phone screen could never manage it).

    Now every android email client I've used in the last decade allows me to read all of the folders I choose to sync offline, but I don't sync most archive folders of most accounts to my phone and I find a phone too limiting for the sorts of emails I'd usually draft while offline, so my requirements are a bit different from the OP's (a phone for me is a convenience tool for limited, light email use, but I'd never try to manage my main accounts from one).
    GameTheory likes this.
  8. GameTheory

    GameTheory Android Expert

    I wish there was a Thunderbird for android, I'd be all over it. It's been great on linux. For android I'm using K9 which has a bug on android 8+.
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