Oh, Apple Mail, how do I love thee? Let me count the ways….
First, I love the look of it. You buy an Apple partly for the way that it makes doing your work easier and quicker, but also for its good looks. Apple Mail fits right in there with its clean, functional interface and its integration with other Apple apps like iCal, Address Book and iPhoto.
Secondly, I love the way Apple Mail places pictures from my Address Book into the emails I receive. It might seem like a minor point, but it has real value for me. I spend a lot of the day answering emails or shunting them from one place to another. It can be a dehumanising experience. With the pictures, it’s easier for me to remember that the posters are real people and that this is real interaction (even if it’s happening in the rather thin, ethereal realm of the internet). I finish the day with a better feeling of having dealt with real people with real problems. I love that.
Thirdly, I love the way that it just does mail. It doesn’t have the bloat of some other applications. Sure, it interacts well with other Apple apps, but it does not try to include them. It just does mail, and it does mail really well.
Fourthly, I love the many plug-ins and options that extend its functionality. Mail Act-on and MailUnreadStausBar are favourites. There are many more listed on Robin Benson’s Apple Mail Plug-ins and Tools web page and I have started a list of plug-ins and add-ons that I like.
Lastly, I love the way that a .Mac account lets me synchronise many of its settings between multiple Macs. I don’t have to frig around with the Mac at work and my Mac at home, trying manually to synchronise them. And moving my email to IMAP has made the co-ordination even more complete.
When I first switched to Apple Macs almost two years ago, I fell in love with Apple Mail at first sight. Like any relationship, we have our little spats, but the love is still going strong.
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Tags: Apple Mail, email, mac, mail.app, plugins, syncing, windows