After a few circles, I am back to Apple Mail

I have been happily using Spark on Mac, iPad, iPhone until recently. Two things have changed. Spark has new version, I seems to get more spam (I am using Gmail & Fastmail primarily).

I have tried Airmail, em Client, Mailmate, etc etc. Each app has their own issue. I tried to like Mailmate but I think I am not nerdy enough to invest the time to make use of its great features.

I am now back to Apple Mail for all devices. I set up spamsieve drone on my Mac Mini using the Apple Mail app there.

I have gpg suite installed so I can set and receive pgp encrpted mail if I have to

Anything I would miss by not using 3rd party mail apps ?

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I have to admit that my love for Spark has taken a step backwards with the latest release, why?

a) Overall stability on iOS, app crashes and an odd issue where I reopen the app, if an email is open I get some basic headers but then the main message body is empty.

b) Subscription, I get they need to fund the project, that nothing was taken away and this is just to get new features, however Au$12.99 a month (annual sub $66 or $5.5 a month) just doesn’t translate to value for me, as I only use this for my personal email. I’m the type that I something is in the product, my mind always tells me that I need it.

c) Apple Mail has come along quite a way, has the core feature set…

BUT I use Apple Mail for my work email, as a result I like to keep my private email in a different app. Helps avoid emailing using the wrong account and also ensures that I resist (as much as possible) the temptation (or accidental distraction) of checking work email outside business hours as much as possible.

I keep checking airmail to see if the overall design has hit the mark (spoiler, for me it hasn’t but it does keep improving. The one killer feature is the filter based smart inbox, however it doesn’t support matching text in the email itself, making it almost useless for me.

Still using Spark on iOS and Mac, I’m going to consider the subscription regardless of needing/wanting the new features, because folks have to generate revenue to maintain development.

PS - Have you checked out Microsoft Outlook? It really is quite good also.

somehow I have a natural dislike for Microsoft products especially the 360 suites. I think they are heavily bloated. May be I would use it for work pursposes but now that I am retired, I do not need that

I hear you, on iOS and iPad, outlook is free and you don’t need to sign up to any other Microsoft service. I personally stick to stock email on iOS and use Outlook on my Mac for work stuff (and would drop it in a heartbeat if I could, however my corporate is M365 focused).

Keyboard shortcuts:
One other point, I love that Airmail implements Google style (and customisable) key shortcuts when in the email list view. When doing email on my iPad, a key thing to do is to archive or delete messages, with all other email clients that I’ve tried this involves really awkward keyboard shortcuts, I don’t think that a keyboard shortcut exists to archive mail specifically in Apple Mail, the delete key just deletes no matter what you set as “move discarded messages into” is set to).

Where in Airmail (and I suspect GMail) you just press “e”, so fast.

I wish that Apple Mail and Spark had this one feature.

This is what I just did - set up Apple Mail and SpamSieve.
I’m using Postbox as my mail client.
Mail and SpamSieve just run in the background, grinding up spam.

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As someone who uses MailMate on the Mac as their primary tool for email processing, I would say that it is very much a Swiss Army Knife tool — can do a lot of things in one app, but perhaps not as elegantly or as efficiently as others. The big reason I use it is because it integrates so well with DEVONthink for archival of emails, not just manually but automatically for particular kinds of email message such as purchase receipts. To be fair, Apple Mail could work just as well for me, it would just require more manual work on my part, and I’m very much into automating wherever possible so I’m in and out my inbox quickly and back to Getting Stuff Done.

I’ve stuck with Apple Mail the whole time. Mainly because I want to use the same apps on iPhone, iPad and Mac. Now that they keep the features in sync, it works pretty well.


I’m on Outlook for my several IMAP accounts and am not happy. It doesn’t sync well between my devices, and has very poor spam filtering. I want to be on Apple Mail or something else Mac-based for the syncing and integration with other apps.

But I have a new law practice and I include my logo in my signature. I know this is controversial, because it adds 79k to an email’s size, but my emails look great and it helps with my branding. I don’t want my whole signature to be an image, just the logo. Are there any alternatives to Outlook that will let me do this? I haven’t been able to find any.

one thing I like about MailMate is that it can reply using the same email alias and Apple Mail cannot do that. I am using Fastmail with a lot of masked email addresses for signing up newsletters, new services, etc. So Mailmate is really good in that regards, I still looking more into it to see whether I can tame it to suit my need. One thing the developer can do more is to make the documentation easier to follow. Sometimes it is hard to find anything until I go to the community forum