If you're anything like me, you don't like composing and sending email on a smartphone unless it's absolutely necessary to do so. For all the advancements made in the field of touchscreen gizmos, it's still a right old pain in the derrière to type anything lengthier than a simple 'yes', 'no' or 'sod off': you just end up with a load of typos or worse, bizarre statements caused by predictive text.
However, what I DO like to do with mail on my smartphone is delete or file emails when I'm on the move, so that when I'm back in the office I don't have to trawl through any unnecessary guff (and get on with the dull but important business of actually replying to emails). Now, if I am deleting or filing mail on a PC or a Mac (for example using Outlook or Apple Mail), I will always sort or group emails by sender and hit the delete key or move option to banish multiple items from my inbox at once; this is by far the quickest way to get rid of or file stuff you don't need.
However, this is something that is surprisingly difficult to do with many smartphone mail apps. Despite there being a plethora of iOS and Android apps for mail management, all promising to make your life more productive, it's really tricky to find any that will sort or group emails. However, I've finally come across one, and it's great: Inky Mail. You can use it to sort by relevance, time, subject, author or size; or group by conversation, message or sender - and perform bulk filing or deletions. This makes life much easier when it comes to mail management and allows you to get a step closer to that holy grail of 'inbox zero'.
That's just the tip of the iceberg though. You can also use Inky Mail to
- filter your mail in a variety of useful ways - for example you can choose to view only emails that you have yet to reply to, emails that come from personal contacts only, or emails that are e-newsletters from publications you subscribe to (and there are a variety of other filtering options)
- send to-do notes to yourself
- create and use a series of 'one click replies' that you can employ to respond to people quickly with
- manage multiple email accounts in one interface and view a unified inbox
Inky Mail works with both IMAP (thus Gmail) and POP3 accounts and is currently supported for iPhone, iPad, Mac and Windows (an Android version is on the way apparently). To date I've just tried it on my iPhone but I have been really impressed. The only negative things I have to say about the app involved folder management:
1) occasionally it is a little bit easy to drag mail into the wrong folder
2) Inky Mail seemed to encounter a glitch in syncing mail folders between the app and Gmail - I deleted some folders (labels) in Gmail but these changes didn't seem to filter through to the app (or at least not quick enough for me - I reinstalled it though and the changes to the folder structure were implemented).
Overall though Inky Mail is really good - so good that it almost makes doing email on an iPhone bearable. One last thing to mention: Inky Mail is (currently, at least) completely free. Check it out on the Inky Mail website.