When it comes to quality third-party mail applications, it’s slim pickings in the Google Play store. Android users are usually left to choose from Google’s Gmail app or the manufacturer-provided option that came with their device.
Those aren’t the only options for checking email, however, and if you’ve got multiple accounts across different services, you’re probably looking for something with a little more functionality than what’s offered. If you look hard enough, you’ll find a number of feature-filled gems in the Google Play store just waiting to be installed. Some of the apps tack on features like added security and a “quiet mode” that mutes your email when you’re not in the mood, while others are useful for dealing with the email aliases you’ve been collecting all those years.
If you can stomach the banner ad fixated on the bottom of the screen, MaiDroid is a powerful mail application that’s both easy on the eyes and easy to use. It supports Webdav, POP3, and IMAP accounts, as well as Microsoft Exchange 2003, 2007, and 2010.
MailDroid comes with a versatile search filter and the ability to set up rule-based connections that can help you save cellular data or prioritize your existing connection for other apps. You can also set up Bookmarks to get quick access to specific folders within your account.
If spam is getting out of hand, you can pay MailDroid a monthly fee to rid of it for you. If you use your tablet to check email, the app also offers a split-screen mode. The app comes with a few caveats, however: Calendar integration and ActiveSync aren’t supported and you’ll have to fork over a whopping $17.99 to remove advertisements.
Don’t be fooled by its cheesy robot dog icon—K-9 Mail is a powerful email application that can help you manage multiple accounts. K-9 Mail automatically detects settings for every new email account and it features gestures and a split-screen mode that’s not limited to tablets. There are also a plethora of settings to choose from for your various mail accounts and folders, and you can set up a “quiet time” to keep your phone from buzzing when you should be sleeping.
K-@ Mail Pro
The streamlined and refined interface of K-@ is right up there with the best mail apps on Android. Like K-9 Mail, K-@ also features a “quiet time” setting, in addition to text-to-speech and lock-screen notifications for those especially important messages. As an added bonus, it comes with its own widgets and a variety of different split-screen modes.
AquaMail is particularly good at easily setting up accounts from services like Gmail, Hotmail, and Yahoo, without a lot of fiddly server settings. It also supports other standard email protocols such as IMAP, POP3, and SMTP for corporate email like Lotus Notes and Exchange.
The app integrates with other third-party launcher apps such as Tasker, Nova Launcher, and Apex Launcher Pro. It also offers a backup and restore function for your email, and you can choose whether or not you want to automatically add a contact after you send off a message.
Perhaps the best feature for AquaMail is its Smart Inbox, which works similar to Gmail’s Priority inbox, though it’s not as accurate. AquaMail was one of the most customizable email clients of the bunch, but you’ll need to fork over $4.95 if you want to manage more than two email accounts and remove the promotional signature it attaches to outgoing messages.
Price: Free or $4.95
Emoze doesn’t feature the most aesthetically pleasing interface, but it is a relatively straightforward email client that offers a unified inbox, always-available push email, and a designated attachments folder. You can also set up a sync schedule to assign peak days and times for synchronizing email, and Emoze displays a “show traffic” bar that makes it easy to determine how much of your data plan you’re saving with your settings. Emoze’s standout features are its encryption and remote wiping abilities.
These aren’t the only email applications in the Google Play store, but they are some of the most functional that we could find. Keep in mind that if you’re an Outlook.com or Yahoo! Mail user, both services offer their own apps for Android, and if you happen to love an email client that we didn’t include in the listing, do leave us a comment.
This story, "5 Android mail apps for the Gmail-weary" was originally published by TechHive.