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William D King: How do I get started with stand-alone Email Software?

William D King

An email has become an essential part of our lives. We need Email to manage our contacts, schedule, and events, work collaboratively with others through shared calendars says, William D King. Email is a major source of information about products and services from companies we do business with as well as those we are interested in hearing from.

We use email to communicate with family members, co-workers, and friends on a regular basis. The need for a system that can keep all these scattered pieces together is now greater than ever before. In this article, I will share some advice on how to get started with stand-alone email software.

Getting Organized: A New Paradigm:

In the past, it was enough to have one computer at home or in your office that handled all your email. Today, if you are like most people, you have multiple computers and devices to handle different functions. How do these tools work together? Email by itself is not really a collaborative tool for managing projects or other types of information. It does not provide the kind of organizing functionality needed for this new connected world explains William D King.

The first thing to do is identify your goals.

What are you trying to accomplish with an Email Application?

What are the specific problems it needs to solve?

Who will be using it? And why would they want to use it over other similar applications?

Answering questions like these will help guide your search for a solution that best fits your needs and requirements. A good way to start maybe by listing key features that are essential for your Email Application says, William D King.

Successful Email Application must be able to:

Manage multiple email accounts with ease. It should let you configure mailboxes the way you want them on an account-by-account basis. Provide tools for organizing contacts and events, sending reminders of upcoming activities on a calendar, or managing task lists. If it has its own search function, that is great too, but not mandatory. Enable more than one person to use the application at the same time through shared calendars or task lists. Synchronize information across different devices so that users always have access to up-to-date information when they need it. Be easy to use and ensure the security of data. As new technologies emerge these attributes may change, but the key ones, for now, are flexibility, security, and ease of use.

The Mail Application you choose should feel like an extension of your computer. It should be easy to set up and configure.  It should provide tools that let you find information quickly and easily either through searching or by browsing. You should be able to view messages in chronological order or by a thread (related messages grouped together), that is up to you. Being able to sort information into folders based on the topic is very helpful too.  

There are many choices available depending on what you need it for Mobile devices, Web-based clients, or regular email clients. The choice might depend on which operating system(s) you prefer using as well as how much flexibility and ease of use you need.

The rest of this article will go over the different Mail Application options and highlight each one’s strengths and weaknesses.  These software packages provide tools for related activities such as managing contacts, calendars, and task lists into an integrated package that works across different devices. Email is just one part of these applications. Once you get started using them, you’ll quickly see how useful they are in their own right.

Mobile Devices:  

Apple iPhone/iPad:   Apple introduced MobileMe in 2008 to serve as a central point for email, contacts, and calendar events on all your devices (Macs and PCs). The service also included storage space (20 GB) which could be used for storing photos and other files says, William D King. Although the service costs money, the applications were free of charge and accessible through an app on your device.  Apple’s MobileMe was discontinued in June 2012, replaced by iCloud.

iCloud brings together all Apple devices into one program allowing users to access information from anywhere. It includes email, contacts, calendars, and storage space (5 GB) with additional storage available for purchase. Setting up iCloud takes just a few minutes. To integrate it with third-party applications you have to authorize them to use your account. Once done you can send emails from any application that supports emailing to your iCloud address or invite others to share calendars, photos, or other files stored on your account.  


Although the initial set-up of iCloud is very straightforward. Information cannot be shared across different devices without logging in to your account. While Apple’s product has many useful features for individuals, businesses are limited. When it comes to sharing information securely with co-workers who might use different platforms (PCs, BlackBerry, and Android, etc.).

On the other hand: The ability to share your calendars and contacts online. Allows you to maintain an accurate calendar or list of relatives and friends even while traveling or not at home. Availability status (whether you are available, busy until a certain time, away until a date) lets others know when they can expect responses.