In the search for the best new email app, one comment we frequently get is that many people still love using Gmail’s web app, and find it far more intuitive than any of the competing full-featured email apps for the Mac. And for good reason: Gmail has great keyboard shortcuts, is fast and responsive, and all of your emails don’t have to take up any local storage space on your Mac. What’s not to love?
Well, Gmail.com will only get you so far. It lives in a browser tab, acts like a web app, and doesn’t use all of your Mac native keyboard shortcuts like CMD+N for a new message. Managing multiple accounts is annoying at best, and using your native Mac Contacts.app email addresses will require copy/paste. It’s not perfect. That’s what Mailplane seeks to solve. It’s a native Mac app that turns the Gmail you love into something much more like a standalone app, complete with offline support, Mac keyboard shortcuts and Contacts integration, simple multiple account support, and more. The latest version even makes it simple to keep up with your Google Calendar in the same semi-native interface that gives you the best of the Mac and the web at once.
Mailplane 3 usually costs $24.95, but we’ve got 3 copies of Mailplane to giveaway to our AppStorm readers this week as an early holiday gift. To enter the giveaway, just leave a comment below and let us know why you’d love a copy of Mailplane — then share the giveaway and leave a second comment with a link to your post for an extra entry.
Hurry and get your entries in — our giveaway closes on Friday, December 13th.
Envato staff or those who have written more than two articles or tutorials for AppStorm are ineligible to enter.
Our sponsor this week is MailTab Pro for Gmail, the ideal app for instantly accessing your Gmail account without having to open your web browser. It lets you do everything you’d need to do in Gmail right from your Mac’s menubar.
Logging into Gmail in your browser every time you want to check your email can get annoying, and you end up missing out on the great integration native apps have with notifications and more. But, if you’re already used to using Gmail online, using it in a native app can feel strange. MailTab Pro for Gmail is designed to give you the best of both worlds. It lets you access Gmail from your menubar, letting you see the mobile version of Gmail to quickly check and send emails, and also lets you switch to the full Gmail experience if you want.
MailTab Pro for Gmail has been designed to fit in perfectly with your Mac. It runs right from your menubar, sends native desktop notifications when you get new emails, and has retina display-ready icons in its toolbar. It even supports standard OS X keyboard shortcuts and multi-touch gestures. You can pick notification sounds and set the menubar icon to change when you get new emails. You’ll get the best of Gmail with the best of OS X in MailTab Pro for Gmail.
Go Get It!
MailTab Pro for Gmail usually costs $3, but is currently on sell for just $1.99 in the App Store. That includes all of MailTab Pro’s features, including full Gmail mobile and desktop support, notifications, chat, and more. If you’ve been wanting a simpler way to access your Gmail web app from your Mac, now’s the time to grab a copy of MailTab Pro.
Our weekly sponsor this week is Postbox, a first class email app for your Mac. It’s a powerful way to make you more productive with Gmail and other email accounts, helping you find the conversations and attachments you need while keeping you connected to your contacts.
Most of us use email daily, and often find ourselves sending dozens of emails a day, so your email app can be one of the most important apps on your computer. But as Mozilla’s stopped Thunderbird’s development, and Sparrow has been bought out by Google, you might be feeling like you need to find a new email app to take on your messaging challenges. Postbox might be just what you’re looking for.
It includes advanced Gmail features like labels and keyboard shortcuts, as well as advanced conversation view that makes it even easier to keep up with your email conversations. It has a powerful search tool that can help you find messages and attachments. Better still, it includes social network integration, and lets you send Dropbox links to files instead of having to deal with attachment file size limits. With a native Mac design, support for touchpad gestures, and a team that’s actively developing it, Postbox is easily one of the best email apps today.
Go Get It!
If you’re ready to get started managing your email better on your Mac, it’s a great time to try out Postbox. You can try it free for 30 days, then buy it for just $9.99. Or, if you’ve tried Postbox in the past and have a license for an older version, you can upgrade for just $4.95! Postbox also has new team discounts, so you can outfit your whole company with Postbox’s powerful email features for less than ever.
A while ago, when I got my first Mac, I began using Mail for keeping up with my email. It was a very good app and I enjoyed using it, but I didn’t know how I felt about having all of my emails (both important and useless) stored in one app, accessible to anyone who accessed my computer. This wasn’t exactly a problem, until that computer got stolen, and as it wasn’t password-protected, whoever stole it or bought it now had access to a good number of my emails, and I couldn’t really do anything about it but but keep him from receiving my new emails.
A few days later, when I replaced my Macbook, I thought twice about using Mail.app again after that first panic attack. I stuck with Gmail’s web app until I found a great and very complete app called Notify. Notify was cheap, it sat on my menu bar and it even used Growl to alert me when I got new messages. It was very simple and pretty, too. It allowed me to quickly check on emails without having to leave what I was doing, and even quickly reply to them or delete them and do marvelous things with them. It synced wonderfully with Gmail. It was a dream come true.
But it didn’t last very long. After I installed Lion, I noticed it started acting weird. It still alerted me when I got new mail and it let me access its menu bar interface, but if I tried to read or reply to any of them, the app would become useless, in many ways. I thought it would get updated soon, but as time went by I got anxious. One day I looked up the app and found a blog where the developers said they weren’t going to keep developing it, and that they had just stopped selling it. I understood, but I also needed to replace the luxury life that Notify had gotten me used to. And so began my search…
Although many people are perfectly happy using Gmail on the web, I’ve never particularly enjoyed the experience. I spend quite a bit of time reading and replying to email, and prefer to have an appealing interface in which to do so – Gmail might be functional, but it certainly isn’t pretty.
For the past five years or so, Mail.app was my preferred client of choice. It did everything I required from an email client, and synced well across my various devices. But development has slowed in recent years, and little has changed in the app since the release of Leopard.
I’ve recently made the move across to Postbox, and couldn’t be happier. It’s a fantastic piece of software, and one that I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend. If you’re tired of Mail.app (or your webmail interface), Postbox is definitely worth giving a try.
Of course, there are plenty of other alternatives. Take a look at our roundup of 8 Awesome Alternatives to Mail.App on Your Mac for some inspiration.
I’d be interested to hear what you think. Are you content with firing up Gmail.com, or do you prefer a desktop email companion? Let us know in the comments, and don’t forget to vote!