Sunday, June 23, 2013

Software Review: Mailplane for Gmail

I’m a huge Mailplane fan and was using the beta for quite a while and fell in love. Mailplane simply put is a dedicated Gmail browser. Why do you need one? Many reasons.

The most obvious one is the fact it allows you to log into multiple Gmail accounts at once on different pages. Sure you can do this with two different browsers or use some of Gmail’s built in capabilities, but this does it all for you automatically in a dedicated fashion. Open it up and you have distinct pages for each Gmail account as well as optionally ones for the calendars. The menu bar icon indicates how many emails are in each account and color codes the different account.

In daily usage, I absolutely rely on Gmail and using it in Safari has caused me problems. Safari slows down, plugins such as Flash crash, and I often have to restart Safari. Even when Safari is acting flaky Mailplane allows me to keep on working while Safari is being annoying. Yes, I could use an alternate browser and have less problems than Safari has, but I love my dedicated email system has a dedicated program for it.

Mailplane just doesn’t deliver up multiple Gmail accounts but allows you to customize the toolbar to dedicate key functions to it such as easily adding attachments, screenshots and clippings to evernote. Opening your Gmail in the browser misses this functionality and each browser handles such situations differently. This is a unified experience independent how your Gmail or browser is setup. Operations such as marking items as trash, starred or spam work regardless of what Gmail view you are in because they are in the Mailplane toolbar.

To increase reliability of Gmail, Mailplane allows you to block ads as well as Gmail chat so that way your Gmail is quick and efficient while operating. Ultimately it uses the same engine as Safari, so it does tend to lock up about as much as Safari, but since it’s focused exclusively on Gmail this happens much less frequently and the program loads your email quickly after restarting it.

Serious Gmail users need to get this program and those of us that use multiple Gmail accounts absolutely need to get this quality program. I simply can’t imagine using Gmail without and when I’m forced to use something else Gmail simply loses something for me.

Pros: Perfect program for Gmail users
Cons: Can be as unreliable as Safari

Five out of Five Dogcows

Article was republished by the Lawrence Apple User's Group 2.0 here as well as other groups listed on the right.