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Google’s Gmail now offers IMAP

Posted by Yaser on October 25, 2007

Google is currently activating IMAP on Gmail accounts. IMAP, or Internet Message Access Protocol, lets you download messages from Gmail’s servers onto your computer so you can access your mail with a program like Microsoft Outlook Express or Mozilla Thunderbird, even when you aren’t connected to the Internet. This is really a pretty big leap for Gmail and it leaves companies like Yahoo, Microsoft and other (free) webmail providers, something they need to be providing in the very near future.

Email now plays a major role in most people’s lives. People want constant access to their email, whether they are in car, the park or even the mall. Well IMAP just makes this easier. IMAP creates a constant connection between mail clients (desktop and/or mobile) and Gmail.

What’s the difference between IMAP and POP?Unlike POP, IMAP offers two-way communication between your web Gmail and your email client(s). This means when you log in to Gmail using a web browser, actions you perform on email clients and mobile devices (ex: putting mail in a ‘work’ folder) will instantly and automatically appear in Gmail (ex: it will already have a ‘work’ label on that email).

In addition, IMAP provides a better method to access your mail from multiple devices. If you check your email at work, on your mobile phone, and again at home, IMAP ensures that new mail is accessible from any device at any given time.

Finally, IMAP offers a more stable experience overall. Whereas POP is prone to losing messages or downloading the same messages multiple times, IMAP avoids this through its two-way syncing capabilities between your mail clients and your web Gmail.

If you’re trying to decide between using POP and using IMAP with your Gmail account, we recommend IMAP.

How much does IMAP cost?IMAP for Gmail is free

source article

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