Using the Mail app on your computer can be a lot more convenient than logging into a website like Gmail. There are a number of benefits—including the biggest, being able to access your downloaded email whenever you’re lacking an internet connection.
If you’ve just made the switch to Windows, or have just finally decided it’s time to use the built-in Mail app, setting it up with your email accounts is pretty simple.
- Launch the Mail app by clicking the Windows Start menu and selecting “Mail.”
- Tap “+ Add account” to add an account
- Choose the type of account you want to add. Mail supports everything: regular ol’ Gmail or Hotmail addresses, your employer’s exchange server, or any other POP or IMAP services you use.
- Enter your username and password.
- Click “Done.”
For most email accounts, that’s all you’ll need to do. If you want to add more than one account to the app, then you’ll need to hit the line Settings button (the Gear icon under the triple-line menu) after you launch the Mail app. There, you’ll use the “Manage Accounts” option to addmore.
If you’re trying to set up a work email address that isn’t based on Gmail, or any other email that failed in that third step, then there are a few more steps you need to do—and you’ll need some info from your IT department.
- Click on “Advanced setup” when you get to choose your account step above.
- Enter your username as your full email address—for instance, email@example.com.
- Enter your email account password.
- Give your account a name. Think something like “Work email.” This is what you’ll see in the left pane of the Mail app for this account going forward.
- Pick a name you want to show up as where your emails are sent from. In 99% of cases, this should just be your name: “John Smith,” or whoever.
- Add your account type and email server information. You’ll need to get this information from your company’s IT department (or wherever it lives on your corporate intraweb). The server will likely be in a format such as “imap.google.com,” and you’ll also need your company’s SMTP information. Your account type is either IMAP4 or POP3. If you’re not sure, most accounts are IMAP4.
- Click “Sign In,” and sign in.
- Click “Done.”
Other email apps worth checking out
The Mail app can be great if you just want to send and receive email, but there are plenty of other great email apps that are also worth trying. Many of those apps also have iOS and Android counterparts, so you can get a seamless experience across both your computer and smartphone.
Mailbird is one of the most popular Mail alternatives, particularly because the app can be connected to Facebook, Twitter, WhatsApp, and a ton of other services. It becomes a kind-of inbox for your entire online life.
Also built in is the ability to snooze emails, so they show back up in your inbox later on when you have more time to read them, and an inline reply feature that allows your responses to a stand out when replying to an individual email.
All that functionality comes at cost of $19.50 annually for a personal account, $29.50 annually for a business account, or $39.50 as a one-time purchase.
Postbox is also a great alternative to Windows built-in Mail app. It works with email accounts like Google and Yahoo as well as POP and IMAP accounts. If you’re working with a number of accounts, they can be grouped within the app into “Personal” and “Work” buckets. The app also offers filtering and tagging opportunities, email signature templates, and emoji support.
Like Mailbird, it also has a cost: $19 for a one-year license or $39 for a lifetime license.