A few years ago I wanted more functionality from my email client. After trying Outlook.com and G Suite, I was not satisfied. Maintaining an open browser window and no access to my email offline —the Gmail plugin wasn’t around yet— was a deal breaker.
The desktop version of Outlook seemed like a good place to start. But, the features did not justify the cost. Thunderbird was more extensive, yet completely free. So, I decided to try that out instead. It was a great email client that handled most of my needs. Anything that Thunderbird did not take care of, extensions were able to handle.
But, the interface felt cluttered and unintuitive. Through no fault of the email client, the text was illegible in many areas because of my custom Windows theme. This combination made it difficult for me to focus on my writing. The features they were offering were not much better than other clients either. For my needs, it was time for a change.
After looking around, I decided to try Mailbird. The interface was clean —making it easy to focus— and I wasn’t losing any necessary functionality. Being able to customize the colors and layout of the interface are what made me download it. As shallow as it sounds, an ideal workspace improves my productivity.
One year after downloading and three months after upgrading to pro, here is:
What I like about Mailbird
- The interface is clean, customizable, and improved my focus
- Undo send, push notifications, full-screen email composition, and everything I need is there
- The settings are intuitive and easy to understand
- Addons from Google Calendar, to Slack, and even Chrome immensely increase functionality
- An interesting speed reading feature with a pro account
- Easy to manage email identities
I find myself using Google Calendar and Slack from Mailbird every day. Being able to easily switch inboxes and identities is great also. But, it isn’t perfect. This brings me to:
What I dislike about Mailbird
- Addons like Facebook and Google Chrome seem like gimmicks. There could be much better functionality in their place
- Managing contacts is difficult without Google Contacts or any syncing options
- The editor inserts a gap between content and the signature if you’re not using the expanded editor
- There is no mobile app, forcing you to use two different clients if you want email on your phone
- Pressing the insert key horribly alters the editing mode with no indication
Contacts are my biggest issue with Mailbird. Managing them in their ecosystem is easy, even more so than other email clients. But, I would like to have them sync with my phone in case I need to call a client, or if anything happens to my PC.
Pressing my insert key by mistake and having the editor ruined was frustrating also. Any sign that I had done that would have saved me a headache.
Overall, Mailbird is a solid email client. If you’re coming from Gmail or another web client, I would recommend it. Especially if you find it easier to write and focus with a clear screen. It looks nice, their support is phenomenal, and the attention to detail shows.
If you’re experienced with desktop email clients and you’re looking for more: Thunderbird may be a better fit. Thunderbird outright has more features and functionality than Mailbird. It all depends on your preferences and needs.
For a different perspective, I encourage you to check out TimeDoctor’s review of Mailbird. They look at it in a different way than I do, and should be able to help you make up your mind.
If you would like to get away from your @gmail email address, get in touch. We can work together to set up your website along with a professional email address to use in your favorite email client.