How many email accounts do you have? If you’re like most of us, more than one. Some of us have many email accounts.
What about free web mail accounts? I’ve had a Yahoo email account since the early days of free email. These days it catches mostly spam.
Who’s got the best web browser email? Google? Yahoo? MSN Hotmail? .Mac? Don’t get me started on .Mac.
I love Apple’s new .Mac email interface and how it looks like Apple’s OS X Mail, but I hate the lack of reliability of .Mac, a big reason why I won’t renew.
The obvious advantage to web-based email, email in your browser, is that mail is accessible from anywhere you’re online, in pretty much any browser.
What used to be the disadvantage was storage options. What was once a measly 10-megabytes of total email storage has given way to 1 gigabyte, then 2 gigabytes, and more.
I’ve been keeping all my mail accounts and most important messages and attachements in OS X’s Mail app. The grand total after five years of use is less than 400-megabytes (and I’m sure I could prune that even more).
Yahoo, Google, and Hotmail all offer more than enough mail storage space for most of us.
The question for the day is, “Which Free Email Service Is The Best For You, And Why?” Ok, that’s really two questions. Almost everyone I know has multiple email accounts these days.
If it’s not Yahoo, Google, or Hotmail, it’s email from work, email from the local internet service provider, email from various organizations, and so on.
Many businesses have web-based browser email, too.
From a general perspective, the free browser-based email services work pretty much the same way. LoginID, password, compose new email, retrieve email, store email, add signatures, save attachments, manage various folders, manage email address lists.
What else is there? The user interfaces are generally spartan and devoid of many bells and whistles, but the basic functions remain the same.
Of the Big 4 (I’m generously including Apple’s .Mac mail in the list), which do you use and why?
Google Gmail – now fully out of beta and generally available for everyone, Google offers their typically spartain look with added AJAX functionality which speeds up the interface a bit. I’ve had a Gmail account since the early beta and it works fine, though not much different than Yahoo.
Yahoo Mail – there’s free Yahoo, and Yahoo Plus which will cost you money each month or year. I’ve had Yahoo mail since the very early days of browser mail and it’s improved remarkably in the past few years, especially capturing spam. Your mileage may vary.
Hotmail – Ewwww! It’s Microsoft. Still, tens of millions of Hotmail users can’t be wrong, right? I had Hotmail before it was Microsoft’s MSN toy, and finally stopped checking the account. I don’t know if it works or what features they offer these days.
After all, how many email accounts can you use?
Back to the question: who’s your web-based browser email daddy these days and why? What features do you use? What problems have you had? Is there anyone better than Google, Yahoo, Hotmail, or (sigh) .Mac?