No matter what device you use, managing your email can feel overwhelming at times. Whether you deal with hundreds of emails a day or just communicate with a few friends and coworkers, it can start to feel like your email is in control of you, instead of the other way around.
Luckily, we’ve found a few apps that can help you remain in control of your email, no matter where you are. All of these apps handle multiple accounts, feature push notifications, and are available for both Android and iOS.
Of all of the apps in this list, CloudMagic feels the most like a “traditional” email app. Aside from the way it handles multiple accounts, it may not seem all that different than your default email app. That alone is a handy feature, though, since CloudMagic supports Gmail, Outlook, iCloud and nearly any other email provider out there, as long as they support IMAP. More importantly for business users, the app also features full support for Microsoft Exchange.
While you can use CloudMagic without the advanced features, you’ll get more from it the deeper you dive. For starters, the app allows you to secure your data by adding a passcode lock. Does somebody need to borrow your phone to make a quick call but you don’t want them to see your email? No problem!
Another of CloudMagic’s most powerful features is that it connects to a wide variety of apps and services. Salesforce.com, Zendesk, Pocket, Evernote, OneNote, Todoist, Trello, Asana and MailChimp are all supported from within the app.
While CloudMagic seems fairly close to a traditional email app, Mailbox feels completely different. While it might take some getting used to, the gesture-based UI quickly becomes second nature, letting you process your inbox quickly and easily from anywhere. If you do manage to empty your inbox, you’ll be rewarded with a photo that changes daily.
One of Mailbox’s coolest features is the ability to defer email to later. Simply swipe to the left, and a menu will pop up, allowing you to move the email from your inbox and return it later that same day, the next day, next week, or any date you pick. While this might seem like a bit of a cheat at first, it’s an incredibly powerful way to drill down your inbox to only the essentials.
Mailbox also makes it easy to archive and delete your mail. A short swipe to the right will archive, while a longer swipe will delete. If an email is part of a project or contains information about something you want to buy, a long swipe to the left allows you to add it to a list, like To Buy, To Read, or To Watch.
Unlike the other two apps on this list, Mailbox is currently limited in the email services it supports. Right now it only supports Gmail and iCloud, though support for other accounts is planned for the future.
While the interface doesn’t feel quite as different as Mailbox, and it doesn’t quite support all the apps and services that CloudMagic does, Boxer often feels like it combines the best features of both of those apps. While that’s certainly a good thing, it’s worth mentioning that while you can use it for free, to unlike some of Boxer’s nicest features, you’ll need to pay $9.99 for the Pro version.
Not all email needs a long, thought out response, and Boxer is built with this in mind. One of the app’s key features lies in the ability to use Quick Replies. Customizable per email account, these let you quickly say “thanks” for an email, request a meeting to discuss something further, or just let someone know that you’ve seen their email and will reply later. If this sounds like too much work, Boxer also allows you to simply “Like” an email, Facebook-style.
Like, Mailbox, Boxer has a heavily gesture-based interface. Swiping to the left archives or deletes mail, depending on how far you swipe, while swiping to the right brings up a menu. Here, you can “Like” an email, quick reply, add it to a To-Do list, send it to Evernote, or access any of the more traditional email management options like marking as read or spam.
Boxer supports quite a few apps, but not as many as CloudMagic: the aforementioned Evernote, LinkedIn, Box, Dropbox, Salesforce, Facebook, Twitter are all supported. Gmail, Yahoo, iCloud, Outlook and many other email services are supported, though for Exchange support via ActiveSync, you’ll need to pay an additional $9.99 fee.
There isn’t a point to trying to pick one of these apps as objectively “best,” as everyone manages their email a little differently. They’re all worth a look, but only you can decide which one is the best choice for your email.
Which one of these do you like best? Did we leave out your favorite email app?