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The Best Email App for Mac


Joanna Yuen

Marketing & Content Specialist - 28 Jun, 2024


Whether you use a Mac or a PC, you’re probably more loyal to platforms that work well with your specific device. This leaves many non-PC users wondering about the best email for Mac. In this post, we are diving into the best email programs for Mac users based on a few different factors.

Key Email Client Features to Look For

With so many email clients out there, it can feel overwhelming to narrow down your choices. How do you know which is the best for your needs overall? Do some perform better in Mac OS than others? When choosing an email client for Mac, there are several key criteria to consider. Here are some important features to look for to help make your decision:

  • User interface - A clean and intuitive user interface is essential for a positive email client experience. Look for an email client that offers a visually appealing and easy-to-navigate interface.
  • Multi-account support - Ensure that the email client can handle multiple email accounts, allowing you to manage all your accounts in one place without having to switch between different applications. This is especially important for people who work with multiple email accounts often, such as account managers or executive assistants.
  • Integration with productivity tools - Look for an email client that integrates well with other productivity tools and services you use, such as calendar apps, task management tools, cloud storage services, and note-taking apps. This will help streamline your workflow and save time.
  • Advanced search and filters - Efficient search functionality and robust filtering options are crucial for quickly finding specific emails or setting up rules to automatically organize your inbox. Note: if you use Shift for your browser, then you can leverage the advanced search function across all of your email accounts, quickly finding what you’re looking for with a single search. In these cases, the search functionality of your email client doesn’t need to be as robust.
  • Customization options - Check if the email client allows you to customize the interface, themes, and other settings according to your preferences. Customization can enhance your productivity and make the interface feel more personalized.
  • Offline access - Having offline access to your emails can be essential when you don't have an internet connection, and not all email platforms are designed to operate that way. Look for an email client that offers offline capabilities, allowing you to read, compose, and search for emails even when offline.
  • Security and privacy - Email clients should prioritize security and privacy. Look for features like encryption, two-factor authentication, and support for secure email protocols (e.g., SSL/TLS). Ensure that the email client has a good reputation for protecting user data. You may want to check for reviews or read testimonials to get other users’ real experiences in terms of data protection.
  • Mobile app compatibility - If you use both a Mac and a mobile device, consider an email client that has a companion app for your mobile platform. This will allow you to seamlessly access and sync your emails across different devices, which comes in extremely handy.
  • Support and updates - What happens if you run into an issue? Check the email provider’s support options, such as documentation, tutorials, and customer support channels. Additionally, consider the frequency of updates and bug fixes to ensure that the email client is actively maintained. You may even want to evaluate the notes on their latest release to see what type of improvements they make.
  • Price and licensing - In a corporate environment, a budget is going to dictate a lot of technology decisions. Evaluate the pricing structure of the email client, including whether it offers a one-time purchase or subscription model. Consider your budget and the value provided by the features offered and weigh these factors into your decision.

By considering these key features, you can select the best email for Mac (for you).

Related Post: What Does Your Favorite Email Program Say About You?


The Best Email Programs for Mac Overall

There are several email clients that could be considered ideal for Mac users. Here are some of them and their key features:

1. Apple Mail

This is the default email client on Mac and comes pre-installed. It offers a clean and user-friendly interface, integration with other Apple apps, and features like smart mailboxes, threaded conversations, and powerful search capabilities. Many Apple users rely on this email and have a positive experience, though it’s certainly not the only option.

2. Microsoft Outlook

Outlook is a popular choice for Mac users who are already using Microsoft Office. It provides a familiar interface, excellent integration with Exchange and Office 365, and advanced features like email encryption, scheduling, and task management. For people using Macs in a corporate environment, they might especially enjoy the calendar and other Microsoft suite integrations.

3. Spark

Spark is an email client that focuses on productivity and organization. It offers a unified inbox, smart notifications, intelligent email sorting, and snooze options. It also supports integrations with other productivity tools like Trello, Dropbox, and Google Drive. For people whose primary objective is getting more done in less time - or minimizing the interruptions that email can present - this option is a good choice.

4. Airmail

Airmail is known for its customization options and extensive features. It supports multiple accounts, has a clean and customizable interface, and offers powerful email management capabilities like snoozing, filtering, and email templates. It also integrates with popular apps and services like Dropbox, Evernote, and Todoist. There’s some other great features that make this option great for Mac users; we’ll dig into them more below.

5. Thunderbird

Thunderbird is an open-source email client that is available for Mac, Windows, and Linux. It is highly customizable and supports add-ons for additional functionality. It offers features like tabbed email, smart folders, and a built-in RSS reader. Some internet users are passionate about open source options and this is a powerful one.

These email clients have their own unique features and advantages, and obviously the best choice depends on your personal preferences and needs.

Related Post: Everything Wrong with Modern Email Apps


The Most Secure Email Client for Mac Users

Email security has never been more important. Cyber crime is on the rise and hackers are more effective than ever. With more digital data availalbe, people are at greater risk than in the past simply by using their email as intended.

When it comes to email client security, there are several options that prioritize user privacy and data protection. One of the most secure email clients available is ProtonMail. Here are some of the email client features that make it a powerful tool for protecting yourself online:

  • End-to-end encryption: ProtonMail uses end-to-end encryption, which means that only the intended recipients can read the emails. The encryption takes place on the sender's device and can only be decrypted by the recipient's device, ensuring that no one else, including ProtonMail, can access the email content.
  • Zero-access encryption: ProtonMail employs zero-access encryption, which means that even ProtonMail itself cannot access the encrypted emails stored on its servers. This ensures that your data remains private, even if ProtonMail's servers are compromised.
  • Swiss data protection: ProtonMail is based in Switzerland, known for its strong privacy laws. This provides additional protection for user data, as Swiss laws prioritize privacy and have strict regulations on data access and storage.
  • Open source: ProtonMail is open-source, which means that its code is available for public scrutiny. This allows security experts to review and verify the software's security measures, reducing the likelihood of hidden vulnerabilities and adding another layer of accountability.
  • Self-destructing emails: ProtonMail offers a self-destructing email feature, where you can set an expiration time for your emails. After the specified time, the email and any attachments will be automatically deleted from both the sender's and recipient's devices. This can be really valuable for a variety of email sends, including sensitive client data that is not meant to be stored.
  • Two-factor authentication (2FA): ProtonMail supports two-factor authentication, adding an extra layer of security to your account. With 2FA enabled, you'll need to provide a second verification method, such as a code from an authentication app, in addition to your password, when logging in.
  • Phishing protection: ProtonMail includes built-in phishing protection to help safeguard against fraudulent attempts to obtain sensitive information. It notifies you if an email appears suspicious or if the sender's address is spoofed. This is especially helpful for people who are newer to email or using it more heavily and can use some help in spotting unusual activity.
  • Secure contacts: ProtonMail allows you to send encrypted messages to non-ProtonMail users as well. You can set a password for the recipient to decrypt the message, ensuring secure communication even with contacts using other email providers.

While ProtonMail is known for its strong security features, it's important to note that the overall security of your email communication also depends on factors like your own practices and the security measures implemented by the recipients of your emails. Even the most well-designed email client features cannot overcome habits that constantly leave your information vulnerable. Check out our blog for more specific ways to protect yourself online.

The Best Email for Mac with Productivity in Mind

If getting more done in less time is your focus, then you’ll want an email client designed for productivity. Fortunately, there are a couple options, and one of the best ones is called "Airmail." Airmail is known for its clean and customizable interface, as well as its extensive integrations with various productivity tools. In addition to email client features that are designed to help people make the most of their email exchanges, Airmail helps people to make the most of other productivity tools they might be using. If you rely on platforms like Todoist, Trello, Slack, etc. then having the right email makes your tech stack work better for you.

Here are some features that make Airmail the best email for Mac users who want to kick their efficiency into overdrive.

  • Unified inbox: Airmail allows you to combine multiple email accounts into a single unified inbox, making it easy to manage and respond to emails from different accounts in one place.
  • Customizable interface: Airmail offers a wide range of customization options, allowing you to personalize the interface to suit your preferences and workflow. You can choose different themes, layout options, and even create custom swipes and actions.
  • Quick workflow actions: Airmail provides a range of quick actions, such as archiving, snoozing, marking as read, and moving emails with a single swipe or click. This helps you process your inbox efficiently and keep it organized.
  • Email templates and snippets: Airmail allows you to create and use email templates and snippets, which are predefined responses or blocks of text that can be easily inserted into your emails. This saves time and effort when sending repetitive or frequently used messages.
  • Integration with productivity tools: Airmail integrates with various productivity tools and services, such as Dropbox, Google Drive, Todoist, Trello, and more. This enables you to easily share files, create tasks, and manage your workflow within the email client.
  • Advanced search and filters: Airmail offers advanced search capabilities, including the ability to save search queries for quick access. It also provides powerful filtering options, allowing you to create smart folders and rules to automatically organize and prioritize your emails.
  • Email tracking and follow-up reminders: Airmail includes email tracking features that notify you when recipients open your emails. It also allows you to set reminders for follow-up emails, ensuring that important conversations are not forgotten.

These features make Airmail a popular choice for users seeking a productivity-focused email client on Mac. Airmail is available for purchase on the Mac App Store and offers a free trial for users to explore its features before making a decision.

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The Most Advanced Feature Set

If you’re keen to have the most robust feature set, there are some specialized options. One email client that offers advanced features and can be used on Mac is "Spark" by Readdle. Spark is a popular email client known for its smart inbox, powerful search capabilities, and productivity features. Here are some of the extra-handy features offered by Spark:

  • Smart inbox: Spark intelligently categorizes your emails into different sections, such as Personal, Notifications, and Newsletters, making it easier to focus on important messages.
  • Smart notifications: Spark allows you to customize notification settings for different email accounts and folders, ensuring that you only receive notifications for important emails.
  • Quick replies: With Spark, you can quickly respond to emails using pre-defined templates or customize your own templates for common responses, saving you time and effort.
  • Email snooze: Spark lets you snooze emails and temporarily remove them from your inbox, so you can deal with them at a more convenient time.
  • Advanced search: Spark offers a powerful search feature that allows you to find emails quickly by using filters, keywords, and other criteria.
  • Email reminders: You can set reminders for important emails, so Spark will notify you at a specified time or when you reach a particular location.
  • Integration with productivity tools: Spark integrates with popular productivity tools like Trello, Todoist, and Evernote, allowing you to create tasks, save emails as notes, and collaborate seamlessly.

These are just a few examples of the advanced features offered by this particular email client. It is available for free on the Mac App Store, with the option to upgrade to a premium version for additional features and customization options.

The Right Browser Empowers Your Email Client

Some people like to access their email client through a web browser for a variety of reasons, and certain browsers provide better support for web email clients and offer a range of features and functionalities to enhance the email experience. Ultimately, the best browser for using a web email client depends on individual preferences and the specific requirements of the user, but we highly recommend giving Shift a try.

Shift is a powerful and innovative app-integrated browser that works on any device. Offering a unified workspace where you can access multiple email accounts and other productivity apps in one convenient dashboard, it helps users to take a centralized approach to email management. Users can switch between email accounts or calendars seamlessly, which enables more efficient multitasking and better integration with productivity apps (you can get a feel for which platforms Shift integrates with in our Apps and Extensions center).

One of the most important aspects of keeping email efficient is managing notifications. Notifications can quickly go from helpful to distracting if they aren’t managed in a way that is helpful to your overall communication and work. Shift offers notification management that can apply across all the apps you use every day, from Outlook to Facebook to Slack and beyond. With a couple of clicks, you can mute all notifications temporarily or control the sounds that play when a notification comes through.  This means you won’t constantly be interrupted by new message notifications. The old principle “out of sight, out of mind” is often repeated for a reason: because not continuously getting reminders of email piling up will allow you to focus on the tasks at hand.

Explore Shift and learn about all of the features that can help you manage email and other apps from a single, user-friendly browser.

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