Managing your email doesn’t have to be a chore with the right app!
In the modern digital era you’d be hard-pressed to find anyone who says they don’t get enough email. Indeed, for most of us managing our email is one of the most vexing and consistently challenging parts of our lives. The fact that email spans work and personal—we need to respond to our boss and to our child’s birthday party invites—means that even when we’re not in the office, we still don’t get a break from the constant inbox overflow.
There are numerous strategies and pieces of advice espoused by productivity experts for managing email and staying sane at the same time. Some of them have to do with signing off of email altogether, checking it only at designated times of day, or turning it off at 7pm. But for some people, due to the demands of their job, running their own business, or working across time zones, that is simply a luxury that is not possible other than when they’re on holiday. They need to keep on top of their email at most hours of the day and they are simply searching for the most seamless way to do just that.
The proliferation of mobile technology also significantly changed the email game. Now we are expected to see an email from our boss not just when we are in the office, but when we are on the train home from the office as well. While this can be hugely convenient in terms of not always having to lug a laptop around or be physically in the office to get work done, it can also lead to email expectations being higher than ever when it comes to responding in a timely manner.
This heightening of response-time expectations means that that while desktop computing is often the easiest place to get a handle on our inboxes, it’s not the place we’re most often checking and replying to urgent emails. Very often, our on-the-go lifestyles mean that we’re squeezing in email answering times when we’re on the train, in line at the shop, or waiting in the car at the school pick-up line. For those moments, dedicated mobile apps can be a huge boon to reaching inbox zero. Here is a roundup of the best email apps to use on your smartphone:
Airmail: Airmail is Apple’s paid email app that was recently released in a mobile version. It has the seamless user experience Mac users have come to expect, coupled with a bevy of customisation options. The more you use and tweak it, the more useful it will be in terms of managing your email needs quickly and efficiently. It also syncs with your Apple Watch.
Gmail: Nearly a billion people use Gmail, so you’d think the company might not be as willing to innovate and push the envelope as they’ve already reached mass adoption. However, the app is constantly being updated and has some impressive features. If you like to label your emails or frequently need to dip into your archive to find something, this app is ideal.
Inbox by Gmail: Inbox is Gmail’s slightly more experimental sibling. Its reminder feature is a great way to avoid constantly referring to your calendar, and it also bundles similar groups of emails together for easy viewing and organisation.
Microsoft Outlook: Microsoft doesn’t always have the greatest reputation on the software market these days, but its Outlook upgrades have been popular with users. Customised swiping for the functions you use most and automatic prioritizing of your different emails means it’s very user-friendly. It also works on Apple products.
Boxer: Boxer is an app that works on Android or iOS, and similar to Outlook it offers a good way to integrate your calendar with your email. It also has a great built-in to-do list function.
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