Personal Solutions For Push E-Mail On The E50
Most of you know what push mail is. Basically it means that emails are pushed to our devices instead of being pulled from the server, hence we don’t need to continually check our inboxes. Until some time ago, the only available solution was BlackBerry service.
RIM (Research In Motion, the company that makes BlackBerry devices) developed a compatible application called BlackBerry Connect to use non-BlackBerry devices with the BlackBerry service. Nevertheless, this application has not been homologated on all carriers, making a lot of S60 devices useless, despite the fact that we can indeed connect to BlackBerry servers. Beside it, sometimes we only want to check our personal emails because not all of us are corporate users and the whole BlackBerry service package is, to say, overkill.
This time, we will review two applications that can be a replacement to BlackBerry devices. I have narrowed the options to only two applications because I have tested them specifically on the E50, checking RAM usage, stability and overall performance. A much extended review can be found at All About Symbian. Since we are referring specifically to the E50, the options have been chosen to what fits best on this device. Other applications have not been chosen due to different reasons (either they consume too much memory, or they don’t fit nicely on the E50)
Just to note, the applications have been tested with a Gmail account, with POP access enabled, and both applications have been tested only with 24×7 push email settings, meaning, they are pushing emails all the time.
The first choice that we have is System SEVEN by SEVEN Networks. Not to repeat what has been already said on the quoted article at All About Symbian, the future of this beta program is unknown, and we do not know if the final release will be free or not. The following is an overview of pros and cons:
- Emails can be truncated at any size. For people living in countries where carriers charge a lot for data transfer, email truncated at 1KB is enough to read sender, subject and first words of the email. The application provides through the menu the option to retrieve the complete email, and separately attachments (if any).
- Stability. It is indeed very stable. The connection can be paused at any time, and resuming it consumes just a few bytes and is very fast. New emails start to fall in the device inbox just a few seconds later.
- You can set more than one inbox for pushing simultaneously.
- Consumes more RAM than the other application tested, and for example, you can’t run simultaneously Active Standby, System SEVEN and Nokia Maps.
- Emails can’t be deleted on the device only yet. If you delete an email on the device it will be deleted on your Gmail account too.
The second application tested is emoze. This has been selected as Editor’s Choice in the mentioned article on All About Symbian, and not without reasons:
- Consumes less RAM than any other email pushing application.
- It is fast*, really fast (most of the time, my emails arrive to my device even before the Gmail Notifier on my notebook tells me that a new email has arrived)
- It is very stable
- You can delete emails on your device only, your Gmail account will not be touched.
- With additional software, you can push your desktop email to your device, making possible to push any email that can be retrieved via your email desktop client (though, unfortunately, this additional application works with just a few POP desktop clients, namely Outlook and Lotus Notes).
- Scheduling is much more advanced on emoze, you can set specific days and times in which emoze will active push mail.
- When an HTML formatted email is sent, emoze strips all html tags, leaving a text-only email. This saves a lot of characters, and makes emails easily readable.
- You can only truncate messages to 5KB (less than 5000 chars) or 8KB (less than 8000 chars).
- Even if it uses much less RAM than any other email pushing application, you still can’t run at the same time Active Standby, emoze and Nokia Maps.
- You can set only one account.
- Startup takes much longer due to database integrity check on both device and server.
Both applications have their pros and cons. For me, one of the biggest advantages of System SEVEN is the possibility to truncate any email at 1KB and retrieve the whole email and/or their respective attachments. However, the fact that any email deleted on my device will be deleted also at my Gmail account is quite a big issue since the main idea of Gmail is not to delete any email anymore.
The only disadvantage of emoze is that emails cannot be truncated to less than 5KB. Considering the fact that we are testing applications to push personal email to our devices, I don’t see the “one inbox only” option as disadvantage (though this can be considered as disadvantage by many of you).
Finally, the unknown future of System SEVEN is a factor to consider before making a final decision. Despite the usual disclosure letter, emoze seems to be on the path of staying as a free service for personal use.
I hope this article has given you a possible approach to receive your personal email on your devices at low cost without the need to be attached to a specific BlackBerry service. I have been testing these applications for the last month, and receiving approximately 15 emails per day and sending 10, I have consumed 12MB of data. Even here in my country, 12MB of data are cheaper than a BlackBerry service.
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