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Author Topic: are email clients sofware a dead industry ?  (Read 9441 times)

tamasd

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are email clients sofware a dead industry ?
« on: March 28, 2008, 07:49:49 PM »
Actually wondering.

I have visited some Windows email client software websites, and while still actively developed, the extras they offer (skins, plugins, ....) while plentiful usually date few years back. No recent stuff.

Also few email clients come to mind that went bankrupt (or some other kind of metamorphosis, like Eudora) recently.

Did all the users move to Thunderbird?

Or did all the developers (as the skins and plugins were mostly third party stuff) move over to Linux ?

Sounds to me like this part of shareware market is dying out, or am I completely wrong?

f0dder

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Re: are email clients sofware a dead industry ?
« Reply #1 on: March 28, 2008, 08:23:28 PM »
Dunno if it's dying, but between Windows Live Mail and Thunderbird (and exchange for the corporate world), you have to come up with a reaaaaally good product to be able to gain even a speckle of attention.
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Dormouse

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Re: are email clients sofware a dead industry ?
« Reply #2 on: March 28, 2008, 08:31:43 PM »
between Windows Live Mail and Thunderbird (and exchange for the corporate world)
Gmail persuaded a lot of people to switch out of conventional clients too.

Shades

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Re: are email clients sofware a dead industry ?
« Reply #3 on: March 28, 2008, 09:11:02 PM »
I always liked FoxMail (http://www.softpedia...lients/Foxmail.shtml) better than all the other clients...but company rules here say that only thunderbird is allowed.

And as already discussed in another thread on DC....I am in the camp of "will not trust anything personal to any online storage method without a local copy!" so my gmail gets POPped as well".   ;)

 

cthorpe

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Re: are email clients sofware a dead industry ?
« Reply #4 on: March 29, 2008, 01:04:37 AM »
I use gmail's online interface for all of my email, but it is downloaded and retained locally as well to ensure that I always have access.


Deozaan

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Re: are email clients sofware a dead industry ?
« Reply #5 on: March 29, 2008, 01:48:19 AM »
I've said it before and I'll say it again:

I used to pity people who used browser-based e-mail. I always had client-based e-mail. Then I got Gmail, and now I pity people who use anything but Gmail (except for offline access like what cthorpe mentioned).

Seriously, the ease of archiving and searching from Gmail is the greatest thing to happen to e-mail since e-mail was invented.


MrCrispy

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Re: are email clients sofware a dead industry ?
« Reply #6 on: March 29, 2008, 02:27:00 AM »
I used to pity people who used browser-based e-mail. I always had client-based e-mail. Then I got Gmail, and now I pity people who use anything but Gmail (except for offline access like what cthorpe mentioned).

This is exactly my take as well. Its only a matter of time before a desktop gmail client with offline capabilities is unveiled (its an internal product) and then the email horse will be well and truly dead.

Things are rapidly moving towards being standardized as :-

- Exchange and Outlook for corporate email. On Linux/Mac/mobile, everyone tries their damndest to be Exchange compatible as thats a key feature

- Gmail for personal mail. Yahoo/Windows Live survive mostly due to the inertia of existing users.

The remaining users can be described as -

- people who are happy with ISP provided email (comcast/Aol etc). In many cases these people have very low volume, but most of them are not aware of the options. The typical non-tech savvy user is here.

- uber geeks who setup their own domains, forwarding schemes, Imap servers etc. I have friends like this who have also moved to gmail.

3 years ago, I was the one playing with betas of Pocomail, Eureka, The Bat!, Thunderbird etc. Now I don't even think about local email.

allen

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Re: are email clients sofware a dead industry ?
« Reply #7 on: March 29, 2008, 09:48:02 AM »
3 years ago, I was the one playing with betas of Pocomail, Eureka, The Bat!, Thunderbird etc. Now I don't even think about local email.

Me as well -- honestly, I used to spend more time tooling about with e-mail and clients to download it with than any other activity on the computer.  I can't even venture a guess as to how many hours I logged into scripting in Poco and Macros/templates in The_Bat!.  And now I really can't bring myself to bother with all of that tedius tweaking and organization.  Not when I can use gmail to simply read, reply, archive mail -- finding it virtually instantly with a quick search (much faster than clicking through folders).  Locally, Opera functions very similar to gmail so wtih gmail imap + opera, it's really a much simpler and more efficient solution.

As a matter of fact, I very recently finally decided to relinquish my web domain e-mail to google hosted apps.

The shift is pretty simple, to me--it's not about more features, anymore.  It's about more data and how it's handled to scale.  The more data there is, the less beneficial manual, heirarchal organization is.

wraith808

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Re: are email clients sofware a dead industry ?
« Reply #8 on: March 29, 2008, 09:58:35 AM »
I go the opposite way from most people I know that use gmail.  I use a forwarder on my own domain, and have it forwarded to a local account and gmail, so I can use gmail, but have backups of the most important stuff.  I give out my gmail account address to things that I don't want in my normal box.  Works pretty well. :)

But for local mail, I'm chained to Outlook.  I looked at a lot of other things, and even bought some of them.  But the problem with trying e-mail clients is a) getting archives into a new client, and b) when you find out that there's a deal breaker in the client, you have a lot of e-mail that is hard to get into another format.  Yes, there's IMAP, but I just never got into the leaving e-mail on the server bit- especially with the volume of e-mail I receive.  So I just deal with Outlook. :(

mrainey

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Re: are email clients sofware a dead industry ?
« Reply #9 on: March 29, 2008, 10:39:20 AM »
I'll play the part of the technological dinosaur.  Been using Courier as my email client for years and just love it.  I can search the archive in a few seconds, set up filtering schemes, tweak away to do pretty much whatever I want.  I even have it set up to play different sound effects depending on which product a customer has just sent an order for (wakes me right up!).
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kartal

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Re: are email clients sofware a dead industry ?
« Reply #10 on: March 29, 2008, 11:22:27 AM »
I use pop peeper for checking my emails
launchy for sending quick emails
thunderbird for downloading my all emails and sending-replying to serious emails (things like business)

I am old schooler I guess, the bigger gmail or yahoo mail becomes the more I go the otherway. I also have serious concerns about privacy policies of those companies. There are some very vague lines in their privacy statements. And remember "nothing" is free even thou you think you are getting it for free.


tamasd

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Re: are email clients sofware a dead industry ?
« Reply #11 on: March 29, 2008, 11:55:55 AM »
Well....GMail is great product.

But I still use offline email client - it's substantially quicker to switch mailboxes, and somewhat quicker to display a message. The spam filtering works my way, not the Google way, and I trust my antispam so much that I don't check Junk folder anymore. Unlike Gmail, with GMail I always have  good messages end up as spam. Some of them come from Google, go figure (Google Alerts service, Google Groups administrator notifications).
Not having to check Junk folder saves me significant amounts of time, quicker email and folder loading saves some as well.
And then the other obvious reasons, but the above pretty much sums up the top ones in my book.

allen

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Re: are email clients sofware a dead industry ?
« Reply #12 on: March 29, 2008, 11:59:47 AM »
There are some very vague lines in their privacy statements. And remember "nothing" is free even thou you think you are getting it for free.

This is absolutely true. I am fortunate in that I have always been immune to the privacy hysteria/paranoia, make no illusions as to my privacy (or lack thereof); online or otherwise, none of us are "off the grid" now, are we?  Frankly, I feel my data is more secure with google long term than the minutes (or hours or days) it might spend with my isp were I using ISP mail -- but at the end of the day, yeah. Realistically, nothing is private that leaves your head.  So long as nothing leaves my head that'll get me killed, I figure I'm doing ok.

kartal

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Re: are email clients sofware a dead industry ?
« Reply #13 on: March 29, 2008, 01:11:24 PM »
Right for privacy is not a matter of paranoia, it is a very basic human right. And anyone who does not ask for it will never get it in modern societies. In that context I demand for my own privacy and rights. I am not paranoid I understand technology and what can be done with it. My pretext is that privacy is like many other rights is matter of respect and a matter basic rights. Because we have already lost does not mean that I should give up demanding and keep myself uninformed about the consequences of loss of such rights.

Eóin

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Re: are email clients sofware a dead industry ?
« Reply #14 on: March 29, 2008, 01:47:15 PM »
Well I must say after much searching and trying numerous client, web-based and desktop apps I gave ThatBat! it's thirty day trial from all the positive comment here and then bought it and am a very happy customer. Thank you donationcoder for the reviews :Thmbsup:

That said going back to the point of the thread; Thunderbird is a excellent client, and if you are on Linux then so is evolution so the desktop client market is a hard one to compete in. The webbased market is even more difficult thanks to Gmail being a genuinely superior product.

mouser

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Re: are email clients sofware a dead industry ?
« Reply #15 on: March 29, 2008, 02:17:48 PM »
I'm one of those people still living in the past i guess.. I like having control of my files, and I have no intention of switching from a local pc client to web based email.

The one area where web-based email really shines, in my opinion, is when you are traveling.

tomos

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Re: are email clients sofware a dead industry ?
« Reply #16 on: March 29, 2008, 02:39:11 PM »
even though I use gmail I still use thunderbird for actually working with my mails

Can you sort your mails by column - by date or by title in gmail ???
search is well and good but if like me you're often unsure exactly what you're looking for :-\

edit/ added emphasis!
Tom
« Last Edit: March 30, 2008, 07:04:36 AM by tomos »

iphigenie

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Re: are email clients sofware a dead industry ?
« Reply #17 on: March 30, 2008, 06:40:39 AM »
I would buy a good mail client which made it easy to organise mail (and addresses) - and by that I mean not having to create hundreds of folders.

I had 2 licenses of poco and upgraded that a few times, but the imap support has never been up to scratch and I want to use imap

Something combining the simplicity of opera's mail client with tagging and multiple identities and all the usual goodies the good clients come with. Outlook lately has come close but it doesnt have the nice cleverness touches that shareware has to deal with one mailbox where multiple email addresses arrive (thats because it is less common in a corporate environment, i guess, but what of the small business?)

Armando

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Re: are email clients sofware a dead industry ?
« Reply #18 on: March 30, 2008, 05:53:16 PM »
Like mouser, tamasd, kartal,  wraith808, mrainey and maybe others, all my mail is downloaded locally. I like having control of my files, and I don't find gmail's search tools more sophisticated than X1 or any other desktop search software for that matter. BTW, it's not because one downloads all emails locally that he/she necessarily spends hours sorting and classifying them.

Shades

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Re: are email clients sofware a dead industry ?
« Reply #19 on: March 30, 2008, 07:35:14 PM »
When looking at this thread: http://www.donationc...ex.php?topic=12851.0   one gets a very nice and extremely helpful tool for (very fast and extensive) searching and archiving email from multiple sources (POP, IMAP etc.).

Life becomes a lot simpler with a software tool like this. Gmail cannot hold a candle against the speed and convenience from this piece of software (if you would ask me ofcourse  ;) ).

johnk

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Re: are email clients sofware a dead industry ?
« Reply #20 on: March 30, 2008, 08:08:24 PM »
I understand those who have given up trying manually to organise ever-growing numbers of emails.  Letting Gmail search take the strain is a logical approach.

It all depends how much control you want to maintain. Gmail is a step too far for me (in letting go), although I use a Gmail account for some unimportant stuff.

My main account is an IMAP account (using my own domain) through Fastmail. Solid performance and a slick, lean (if slightly old-school) web interface. Scripting allows me to do all my organising/filtering server-side, so email drops into Thunderbird already filtered by folder. Spam filters are so reliable I stopped checking my junk (after checking for several months without a single false positive). Terrible search, but...

Archivarius indexes IMAP accounts (i.e. it makes it own local, indexed text copy of the account). I'm sure it's not the only desktop search software to offer this feature.

But I agree with the original observation at the start of this thread about the slow development of email clients. I'm still looking for the perfect IMAP client. I swap between Thunderbird and Windows Live Mail...

Steven Avery

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Re: are email clients sofware a dead industry ?
« Reply #21 on: April 03, 2008, 12:42:21 PM »
Hi Folks,

   I think the slowdown in email clients to a crawl is a real problem.  Gmail is great for some stuff (e.g. I have an account for my programming-related personal mail so I can access it anywhere, and I auto-forward each mail to my ISP account).

   However for heavy volume usage, such as email forums, nothing is remotely close to an email client filtering into dozens or hundreds of boxes, having many views, having at-home composing, as some of the posts pointed out.  Eudora has been mine for years, noting the stability and industrial-strength filtering and very helpful user forums (when I looked at Thunderbird a while back the filtering was like toy-level, may be better by now).  I would always consider Becky, TheBat! and Poco as well as some others, especially now that Eudora has stopped development of the base product and been sort of absorded by Thunderbird.   

   However none of the alternatives has inspired great confidence (not to say they aren't good products, but I always would run into weaknesses) so I stick with Eudora while agreeing that the lack of the competition of a few years back has stifled development.  Gmail on one end, Outlook this and that on the other.

   I'll await and await.  (Eudora 7 is fine meanwhile.)

   There is a company that is trying to be a sucessor to Eudora, Infinity Data Systems, with a product called  "Odysseus", billed as "The Eudora Successor".  Perhaps it is in Beta, maybe.  Too soon to tell if it will pan out.

Shalom,
Steven
« Last Edit: April 03, 2008, 12:51:22 PM by Steven Avery »

superboyac

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Re: are email clients sofware a dead industry ?
« Reply #22 on: April 03, 2008, 04:25:02 PM »
Like mouser, tamasd, kartal,  wraith808, mrainey and maybe others, all my mail is downloaded locally. I like having control of my files, and I don't find gmail's search tools more sophisticated than X1 or any other desktop search software for that matter. BTW, it's not because one downloads all emails locally that he/she necessarily spends hours sorting and classifying them.
Me too.  I have to have control of my files locally.  And I back everything up myself onto my own drives, my own way.  Just in general, I'm not a fan of the whole using web applications that is going to be the next big thing.  I know it's a fantastic evolution for 90% of the people out there who don't like to fiddle with software and don't have their computers meticulously set up to do every little thing just the way they want.  But for us powerusers, we need that control.  We want our stuff in our own house in our own hard drives.
And you know what else, web apps are great, but they just don't react the same way as a locally installed program.  It's hard to describe, I want to say the response time is slower, but a lot of them (like google) is pretty quick and fast.  There's just a "feel" to them that doesn't sit well with me.  There's a viscosity to them if that makes any sense.
For similar reasons, I'm not a huge fan of touch-screen technology.  It's really cool and useful for most people.  But it's not so great when you need to get down and dirty with what you're doing.  That iphone touch screen keyboard is just not as effective as a tactile keyboard...it's not possible.  That's how I feel about web apps vs local programs.
What's going to happen to our computers, then?  Our storage devices, our cpu, our memory?  What's the defining piece of equipment going to be?  The Ethernet port?  The speed of your ISP connection?  I would  completely rather have my own equipment limiting my processing capabilities rather than relying on the ISP connection.  Talk about reliability...unless there's a big revolution and everyone is able to get fiber optic, unlimited bandwidth connections (which will never happen in the near future).  It's waaaaay better to rely on your own equipment for all that stuff.

Archivarius[/url] indexes IMAP accounts (i.e. it makes it own local, indexed text copy of the account). I'm sure it's not the only desktop search software to offer this feature.
Seriously.  There is nothing any web app can do that some program can't do better.  The only advantage for web apps, like mouser said, and it's a pretty HUGE advantage, is the fact that you can access web stuff anywhere.

No, I am personally dreading the day that web apps take over.  But I'm not too worried, I'm certain that the local programs won't become obsolete, at least not in my lifetime. 

CodeTRUCKER

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Re: are email clients sofware a dead industry ?
« Reply #23 on: April 05, 2008, 12:08:07 PM »
I'm one of those people still living in the past i guess.. I like having control of my files, and I have no intention of switching from a local pc client to web based email.

The one area where web-based email really shines, in my opinion, is when you are traveling.

Would something like GoToMyPC allow one to have one's cake and eat it too? 

Armando

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Re: are email clients sofware a dead industry ?
« Reply #24 on: April 05, 2008, 03:54:16 PM »
If the remote PC is stable as a rock and really secured, I guess that would indeed be an ideal  solution -- well, for me at least.