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Three ways Apple could improve Apple Mail

Dan Moren | March 7, 2016
Email remains an important form of communication online, and yet, Apple's approach to email has remained largely static.

The closest Apple gets is its VIP feature, which I've long used to manage my notifications for incoming email. I'd like even more granularity there too, though, like the ability to have distinctions for messages from family, friends or work contacts. Right now it's a matter of whether a contact is important or not, when the truth is that there are varying degrees of importance. I might always want to see an email from my mum or dad immediately, whereas that funny dog video from my friend could probably wait an hour or two.

Some of this could potentially be done with rules (only available in the OS X version of Mail), but why make users reinvent the wheel? Computers excel at heavy lifting like this, and it frees up a lot of room for our brains to do the things they're good at.


Once upon a time, Apple tried to integrate its iChat instant messaging app (now Messages) with Mail. The results were...underwhelming, but perhaps that was because it was a move that was more about where the puck already was than where it was going.

So perhaps Apple could build on the powerful data detector technology that it's already built into Mail - you know, the one that finds addresses and meeting times and lets you act upon that information - to look for other types of known information: people's names, for example. iOS 9 is smart enough to look through your email and alert you if the unknown number calling you might be somebody you've conversed with in email - what if Mail could look for names and let you pull up more information about someone, even just a Google search or their Twitter profile, right from an email message?

Integration with other services, even all those other means of communication we all use, could turn email into a more relevant part of our digital lives. Because though I don't think that email's going away anytime soon, it certainly could stand to be brought - kicking and screaming, even - into the 21st century.

Source: Macworld Australia 


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