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Email options ?


iPF Noob
Jan 3, 2011
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I'm just about ready to finish my decision on an iPad purchase, and I have one last (hah!) e-mail question that I haven't been able to determine yet.

I use Thunderbird on my home PC connecting to multiple IMAP mail accounts (all with different send and receive servers). Also, I like the option that Thunderbird gives me of using whatever 'from' address I would like.

Does the iPad e-mail program allow me a similar set of flexibility? I'm really looking for a single client that gives me a single address book spanning multiple e-mail accounts. A unified inbox is a nice plus, but not necessary.

Is there someplace online that has the specs on the built-in apps that would answer questions like this?

Also, does iBooks allow annotation of e-books? If not, is there an app for the iPad that does?

Thanks a bunch!
I hope that I can answer most of your questions.

(1) The iPad email client allows you to establish as many email accounts as you want. These can be a mix of IMAP and POP.

(2) You can view these accounts with a unified InBox or from the InBox of each account separately or switch back and forth between the two views 'on the fly'.

(3) You can set the 'reply to' address of each account to whatever you want.

(4) The iPad contacts list spans all the accounts.

Some 'issues' that members have commented on. The folder structure that you see in iPad's email reflects that on your mail server. There is no way, in iPad email, to 'add' or 'delete' folders, as you can in Thunderbird or Windows Mail.

iPad email does not really support Group mailing, even if those Groups are present in your Contacts list. When you start to enter an email address iPad mail tries to autocomplete with a drop-down list, but does not match Group names. In the 'To', 'cc', 'bcc' boxes there is a '+' symbol, which allows you to scroll through the Contacts list. Surprisingly, here, there is an option for Groups. But, having found the Group you want, you then have to select the members of the Group that you're going to send to one at a time - as though, perhaps, you didn't necessarily want to send to every member of the Group but perhaps only a sub-set.

To 'add insult to injury' there is no way to create a new Group in the iPad Contacts list; this has to be done outside on a PC or Mac and then 'imported' into the iPad by a sync operation.

You can only view, as a maximum, the last 200 emails though, for IMAP accounts, the iPad will allow a search through any emails on the mail server and download those emails that match irrespective of how many emails you have on the server. But, of course, this only works if you're on-line.

The minimum automatic 'fetch' interval for emails is 15 minutes, though you can manually fetch as often as you like.

The iPad fetches email even when it's 'asleep', waking up briefly to check for new mail at the requested interval (say every 15 minutes)! It even sounds the 'Mail Waiting' chime, which can be disconcerting if you leave your iPad by the side of your bed at night and forget to mute it.

Having said all this, there are numerous third-party apps available that 'overcome' these problems.

The iPad email client will let you add all the IMAP clients you want. As long as you know the servers settings you should be ok.

It will let you set the default send address/account.

It has a unified inbox.

I'm not sure how the address book will do syncing with multiple accounts. Exchange accounts can be set up to sync, and as far as I can tell each will end up with a separate address listing in the Address Book app. I only experimented with it briefly using Google setup as an Exchange account.

iBooks will allow you to add notes to your books. It isn't a very good annotation solution. There are several apps that will let you annotate pdf files.

For overviews of most of the Apple Apps you can go here.
Apple - iPad - Guided Tours

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