When dealing with emails, there are many different types of ways you can get your email. The 3 main types are POP3, IMAP and MAPI.
POP is the oldest type of email of the three. POP stands for “Post Office Protocol” and was built so that email clients like Outlook and Apple’s Mail app could connect to email services to download and send emails.
POP3 downloads email from a server to a single computer, then deletes it from the server. Because your messages get downloaded to a single computer or device and then deleted from the server, it can appear that mail is missing or disappearing from your Inbox if you try to check your mail from a different computer. There is also an option to leave your downloaded email on the server, but whatever changes done on this single computer will not be reflected on the server.
- Email downloads to one location, keeping only a single copy.
- Easiest to set up.
- No message syncing.
- Once the email is downloaded, it disappears from the server.
- Have the option to leave email on server, but whatever changes done on the computer will not be reflected on the server.
- No contact, calendar, or data syncing.
IMAP, Internet Message Access Protocol, is another common Internet standard for retrieving email. When an IMAP email client retrieves messages, it downloads a copy of messages from the cloud to your computer but leaves a copy in the cloud as well.
It is a better option as once the email is mapped on to your home computer or mobile device, any changes you make on the server or home computer or mobile device, it will be updated throughout. Thus what you see is what you get. This gives you freedom to access and make changes your email with multiple devices with IMAP. However, IMAP is an email only protocol, which means contacts, appointments and tasks cannot be managed or accessed using IMAP.
- Full message syncing.
- Multiple device and client support.
- Flags and to-do items sync.
- Messages saved on server and downloaded to every new account.
- Very simple to enable and use.
- Since messages are stored on the server, space can easily become an issue. (Cloud Storage)
- Syncing issues can arise.
- Unable to sync contacts and calendars.
- Mailbox access is slower, especially for large mailboxes as it is dependent on the internet.
MAPI, Messaging Application Programming Interface, is a proprietary Microsoft protocol that was built to allow a user to sync emails, contacts, calendars, and many other features between email clients and services. This allows the Microsoft Outlook email client to fully utilize all the features of an Exchange server including shared address books, shared calendars and public folders.
With MAPI, you can move messages from the cloud into a local file on your computer called a .PST file, a process through which copies of messages are deleted from the cloud and stored on your computer. This can allow for valuable storage space and help you create backups of your business-critical emails.
- Full message syncing.
- Contacts and calendars syncing
- Messages stored on the server
- Mails can be un-sent or changed if sent within the server’s domain
- Not every desktop client fully supports Exchange.
- Exchange server must be implemented to use, which is difficult and expensive.
- When connecting to a company’s Exchange server, the company has control over your mobile device and can view emails sent and received.
- Syncing issues can occur.