Note: This page is a review which forms part of the post Windows 10 System Apps Review
What’s this app for?
Remember email? Yes, it’s still going. This is the app to add all your various email accounts to, so that you can send, retrieve and respond to your email from the comfort of Windows 10. Worth mentioning that the Mail app comes bundled/integrated with the Calendar app,
Does it do the job it was primarily designed for?
Yes. Although it didn’t always do such a respectable job as it does now. In its early formative days, this was an app about as feature packed and reliable as a paper bag would be as an umbrella. But times have changed and this app is now arguably the one app that’s had the most visually dramatic changes over the months since the launch of Windows 10. To start off with, it now looks pretty to look at, and has some decent personalisation options:
Setting up email accounts is reasonably easy, although maybe a little more clunky than it needs to be. There’s an oddness with the defaults for account synchronisation, which are a bit poor I’ve found. The setting “Based on my usage” which has no definition of how its calculated concerned me enough to immediately ignore that and set things to hourly or less. The downside of that default is I’ve heard from several friends who have thought the app was broken as they had no emails for ages due to that setting.
It’s not all good news with this app. Some problem still persist even after many months. Hitting the sync button manually is an unreliable experience. Sometimes quick to sync, you’re often left hanging for ages. Downloading of attachments still seems like a big drag with them often just never downloading first time. There’s also no preview of attachments. I’m still often loading up Microsoft Outlook or web-based versions of email accounts to view attachments quicker than in the mail app. Then there’s the folders issue; you can see folder in your email account but you can’t rename them or move them about. On top of that, if you make changes to folders in Outlook or a web-based client, the Mail App often doesn’t update the folders for ages.
What’s the alternative?
If you’ve Microsoft Office there’s obviously the very comprehensive Outlook but free-wise, Windows Live Mail can still work in Windows 10 and there are always web-based portals to most email accounts.
Hit, Miss, or Maybe?
Maybe; for a long time I’ve used this as my default mail app but the issues over customisation of folders, attachments and manual syncing mean I’m often swapping to Outlook or web-based alternatives most days. It is however, still a mostly reliable and useful app for email and unlike some system apps, a very worthy and beautiful looking addition to Windows 10.