GMail now supports IMAP; check that off your wish list
By Steve Ragan Oct 25, 2007, 16:36 GMT
On Wednesday, at Interop New York, Matthew Glotzbach, product management director for Google Enterprise, announced the release of IMAP support in GMail. The most requested feature for GMail since it was launched users will now have the ability to synch Outlook Express, Outlook 2003 and 2007, Apple Mail, Windows Mail, Thunderbird, and countless mobile devices including BlackBerry from RIM.
“IMAP isn't new, but bringing it together is,” Glotzbach said during his talk.
IMAP is a mail protocol that unlike POP allows messages to exist and to be managed on the server.
“This means that if a user moves a message to a different folder, replies to or deletes messages, or anything else, everyone who subscribes to that IMAP account in their email client will always be in the loop. T his can be very useful if you have a shared company-wide email address, like ‘sales,’ and you want to prevent multiple sales people from replying to the same message, or if you have a personal email address that you check on multiple machines,” explains Garett Rogers on ZDNet.
David Murray, Associate Product Manager, wrote about the new feature explaining, “There are two online petitions I've signed in my life. One was for a ‘Xena: Warrior Princess’ movie. The other, which I signed a few months before starting at Google, was for GMail IMAP…. For the past few years, we've offered POP access, which is similar to IMAP but lacks one critical feature: your changes made on other devices aren't seen in GMail when you log back in…. Since then, I've seen countless blog posts, requests, chats, and just about everything else asking, ‘Are you guys ever going to do IMAP?’ Well now, I can say Yes. Yes, we are doing IMAP.”
“It keeps the same information synced across all devices so that whatever you do in one place shows up everywhere else you might access your email. For example, I can read an email in GMail, then move it to the ‘Starred’ folder on my iPhone, then archive it by moving it to ‘All Mail’ in Thunderbird, then see all of those changes on my Blackberry,” he adds.
Google has set up a nifty little help page to get those of you interested started with your IMAP conversion.
Check it out here: http://mail.google.com/mail/help/about_whatsnew.html