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Email Clients. Frustrated results send me back to basics. Or does it?

Discussion in 'Android Apps & Games' started by JaSauders, Sep 7, 2011.

  1. JaSauders

    JaSauders Well-Known Member
    Thread Starter

    I've been tinkering with some email applications lately on my Android. I first started with K9 mail but I ran into far more inconsistencies than I ever anticipated. I sat here earlier tonight and tested them and got some very mixed results. I have two accounts, one Gmail IMAP and one Exchange account through work. There were times with K9 I would be in my Exchange account and send an email but it would somehow get sent from my Gmail account. Uh. I was definitely in Exchange when I typed the email. How did it get crossed up? I even tinkered with the "default" setting. Whether it was on the Gmail account, Exchange account, or both disabled, I still got mixed results a lot of the time.

    So then I fired up MailDroid. I liked it, but the ads were far more annoying than I anticipated. So naturally I look at the Pro version thinking I could swing 5 bucks for it. 17.99? For an email app? Pass.

    Don't get me wrong here, guys. Serious kudos to the dev teams with both apps. But with the issues I was seeing it just made it hard to utilize them and fully rely on them.

    That said, I began to look more into the default app. I mean, what is it that it could do that the other's couldn't? What features was it lacking that the other's had?

    Default Email Client:
    Cannot customize color codes.
    *Cannot set Gmail to "push" - only check in every 5/10/15/+ minutes.

    *This is a minor annoyance, as the Gmail app automatically pushes the emails to me once they are sent, whereas the default email app can only check in 5 minute intervals at best. Minor annoyance, but still one of those "eh" things I noticed. However on a cosmetic side, the Gmail app is black text on white, which I can't really stand (default email app is white text on black - nice). I haven't found a way to customize these color schemes either. Plus I like my email accounts to be integrated into one app, so the default email account offered that, whereas the Gmail app is clearly for Gmail accounts only.

    However, the default client... works. It brings me my email. It sends emails when I press send. And from the proper account.

    Has anybody else found themselves in the same boat? Are there any other email apps out there worth trying out? I just wanted to get a general consensus for what others out there are experiencing.

    Thanks guys!

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  2. amlothi

    amlothi Android Expert

    All of the problems you noted (that I quoted below) are solved by 1) Using the default Mail app for your Exchange account, and 2) Using the Gmail app.

    The only thing that doesn't solve is your need for custom colors. Personally, functionality beats "good looks" when it comes to apps, IMO.

    That said, if you really hate the default Gmail app, do a Google Search for "Black Gmail Android" and you can download a white on black custom version.
  3. Take a look at Touchdown for your Exchange account. I don't think you can beat it.

    I have two accounts on my phone. Exchange and Gmail. I use Touchdown for Exchange and the Gmail app for Gmail.
  4. JaSauders

    JaSauders Well-Known Member
    Thread Starter

    I definitely agree what you said about functionality vs looks. It just surprised me I was having that many issues when I see what kind of reviews this thing is getting.

    I'll look around for the black Gmail version. It's kind of ridiculous that sort of simple functionality isn't built in though... even to at least switch the current color scheme to opposite.

    However, going back, I still like having my accounts in one app. But I suppose hitting "back" to hit the other email icon isn't so different from hitting home and then selecting my email icon from there. I definitely need to ditch thirty white though. It's just not so easy to read in the sunlight (washed out) and I'm often outside.

    Also, if I use separate apps for email and gmail, is there a way to change their notification icon at the top when I get an email? They're so close it's hard to tell the difference.

    Also... Just curious do I need to be rooted to install the black apk?
  5. SammyAcclaim

    SammyAcclaim Member


    As a previous poster already said. Gmail and Touchdown. That's all you need. I use it daily and it's great. Notification icons don't look anything like each other and both applications do not interfere with each other. No ads to deal with and it's simple to setup and use. Android's stock email app also works just fine with Exchange and does not interfere with Gmail in any way. I just find it doesn't have all the features that Touchdown does. I think they still offer a demo version of touchdown for testing if you want but I have found the money I spent on Touchdown is well worth it.

    Good luck to you.
  6. JaSauders

    JaSauders Well-Known Member
    Thread Starter

    I know what the previous poster said. But as I stated above, I'm trying to keep my email accounts in one place. I know some people prefer having separate apps for separate email, and that works too, but right now I'd rather keep them together.

    That said, Gmail's app with white background/black text I really, really don't like. I'd happily use the stock email client for Gmail for that exact purpose alone due to its black setup. However, despite this, the one thing I like is that Gmail is more instantaneous to receive emails, where the stock email client using imap can only slim it down to 5 minute intervals.

    On a flip side, I came across this app.


    It looks insanely similar to the stock email app. Really the only difference I found is the fact you can actually pick and choose your color. I find it interesting how people in the comments are saying it's world's better than the stock app, yet I can't see anything that is that different??

    EDIT - for now I'm going to use separate apps, email for work email and the gmail app for my gmail accounts. While I would like both email accounts to be on one app, the biggest thing is being able to identify them apart. Since I cannot choose colors in the email app to drastically change their appearance (for some reason the pre-defined colors are almost always a dull blue/purple/pink/red to me, which all look far too similar), I figure the white vs black background will serve as a decent separator.

    That said, I'm still a little shocked (and disappointed) at the lack of email customizability in the default app, as well as the "slapped together" feelings I've noticed with some other email apps. Oh well, I just need to send predictably, and at the end of the day, these apps DO that... *shrug*

    I'd certainly like to hear any other suggestions, though!
  7. JaSauders

    JaSauders Well-Known Member
    Thread Starter

    So i'm trying to work things out with my relationship with k9 again because I was missing one minor feature that I know I liked having in opera... Pinch zoom. Problem is k9 is sort of working now... But it constantly says I have a new email even if I read the email and even delete it. Any ideas? Too bad there's no zoom in either the default app or the gmail app and no text size control in the default mail app. :(
  8. JaSauders

    JaSauders Well-Known Member
    Thread Starter

    I think K9 and I have resolved our relationship. I did a little reading and found out that where K9 strives is imap support and not so much the Exchange WebDav support.

    So I looked on my Thunderbird on my Ubuntu laptop and realized I was indeed using imap on that account. So I thought, wait a sec... so I deleted the account and added it via imap. Guess what! It works! Predictably! Each time!

    I can't say I have the highest opinion of Microsoft Exchange WebDav, but I'm glad imap is proving to be the universal and most widely accepted email protocol for all systems, including Exchange.

    We're good to go. :)

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