Want to share your email across devices?
Wanting to share your email across your iPhone, iPad and desktop computer is nothing new. Business with their own mail servers or small business servers have been able to do this for a while, but with the growth in smartphones and tablet computers like iPads over the last year or two, we’re seeing requests for the ability to manage emails on the go increase dramatically. Here’s our guide to get the best out of business email.
We see a lot of devices that our customers want to connect to email. Some are easy, some we feel are a lot more difficult than they need to be, including one customer who took his iPhone to his network who couldn’t figure it out.
For all round ease of use, we recommend the trust Apple iPhone or any Android device (they all work pretty much the same) and the network they are on, doesn’t really matter. If you are considering a tablet, the iPad or any Android based tablet will be fine.
POP3 is the traditional default system. All the emails are held on the mail server where your website lives until you hit send/receive or at timed intervals. At this point, all the emails are collected by your computer and often removed from the mail server in one fell swoop. You can set your email program to leave a copy on the server for a few days, but in reality this isn’t often set.
Big advantages to the POP3 system is that once you have downloaded the emails, they are yours to deal with and there isn’t usually a copy hanging around that other people think everyone else is dealing with it. The server only holds email temporarily so takes up little storage space. Hosting companies like this, because they are not having to back it up either.
Disadvantages are that if your PC decides to fry a hard drive, your mail is more than likely lost unless you have a backup elsewhere.
IMAP is a system ideal for sharing your email across devices. All your email is stored on the server, your devices simply give you a view of what’s on the server. This means that all your emails will be available across all the devices that you have. When you reply from your computer, you can see that reply on your iPhone and table too, and vice versa. Great system for todays business person.
The only disadvantage is that because all your emails are stores ‘in the cloud’ your hosting provider is having to back this up and pay for storage space, so you might have to pay for a little extra if you hoard emails like me! IMAP loves users with good housekeeping practices. Be wary of keeping big attachments or lots of photos in your inbox, much better to download them locally and take them off your allowance.
To change to IMAP from POP3 is a simple task. The easiest way is just to add your account again but when you are asked to select which email type you want to use, select IMAP from the list. All the different port numbers and settings should be configured for you, you just have to add your email address, password and server addresses.
As a guide, for a 2gb email box on IMAP you will pay around £10+vat per mailbox per year, with us, up to 400mb is provided within your current hosting arrangement. 400mb will be enough for about 4000 emails, but much less if you have large attachments.
If you need help with this, please get in touch!