Mailroom - Gmail and Google Apps Mail Client Review
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Mailroom - Gmail and Google Apps Mail Client Review

Our Review by Jason Fanguy on May 14th, 2010
Rating: starstarstarstarblankstar :: VERY USEFUL
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Mailroom is a feature-rich email utility which allows its users to view and utilize all their Gmail accounts at once, within one application, without compromising essential features, such as labeling, threading conversations, etc. found in Google’s onli

Developer: Code Contortionist
Price: $2.99
Version Reviewed: 1.2.2

iPhone Integration Rating: starstarstarstarblankstar
User Interface Rating: starstarstarstarblankstar
Re-use / Replay Value Rating: starstarstarstarblankstar
Overall Rating: starstarstarstarblankstar

When it comes to email, I’m a power user, which is why I use Google’s Gmail services. I have 4 separate Gmail accounts alone and IMAP all my other accounts through them. I’ve been using Push for Gmail on my iPhone, mainly for push notification visual/audio alerts, but I’ve always wished I could view all my accounts at once on my iPhone, separated by account name, and manage them using the same features and tools offered by Google's online services. While I'm able to create multiple accounts on my iPhone, I'm unable to properly use the special Gmail features using the iPhone's built in email client.

Thanks to Code Contortionist and their app: Mailroom – Gmail and Google Apps Mail Client, power-Gmail users like me can now view, access and manage all their individual Gmail accounts in one app, without compromising features such as labeling, threading conversations, etc. In addition, Mailroom integrates users’ address book, allows attachment viewing and features the ability to view, as well as compose, read and reply to mail, offline. Its offline support keeps a version of your recently read/received messages on your phone, allowing you to compose, read and reply to mail via HTML5's offline storage.

When I first launched Mailroom, I was pleasantly surprised at its clean interface and ease of use. Entering new accounts is simple: Just press the + button and enter your email address, password and account label. Mailroom then syncs the account and displays it, along with any others you entered, all on one page. In addition, Mailroom provides users with the number of unread messages in each account, represented by a blue number icon, as well as the number of new messages you received since last opening the app, represented by a green number icon, providing an easy way to manage and keep abreast of the contents (new and old) of your accounts.

Switching between accounts is fast and opening mail brings users to an in-app, Gmail HTML5 iPhone optimized interface, instead of the internal iPhone mail client. The interface works as advertised, without the odd workarounds of IMAP, providing users with Gmail functions like labels, archiving, threading, etc., allowing users to manage their mail as they normally would online.

As mentioned earlier, Mailroom contains an Offline mode (HTML5 Storage), allowing you to read, reply and compose without a data connection. Perfect for those times when you’re stranded on a desert island. The main screen indicates which accounts are available for offline viewing.

Mailroom’s optional badge icons display the total number of unread messages and the number of new, unread messages since the app was last opened. Maillroom will also remember the last account you were looking at when the app was last closed.

While Mailroom is convenient, user-friendly and feature-rich, I was sad to learn that it doesn’t support push notifications. Instead, the developers have opted to work with additional parties to deliver pushed content, e.g. Prowl integration. This means I’ll have to keep Push for Gmail on my iPhone, in addition to Mailroom. Also, Mailroom limits its functionality to Gmail users only (it only works with Google Mail accounts). How nice would it be to add multiple accounts across multiple services!

I really like this app and, during my short tenure with it, use it daily. The ability to view and manage all my accounts with Mailroom's rich feature-set, on the go, is priceless. If you’re a power Gmail user like me and find the iPhone's native email features lacking, you should definitely check out Mailroom!

iPhone Screenshots

(click to enlarge)

Mailroom - Gmail and Google Apps Mail Client screenshot 1 Mailroom - Gmail and Google Apps Mail Client screenshot 2 Mailroom - Gmail and Google Apps Mail Client screenshot 3 Mailroom - Gmail and Google Apps Mail Client screenshot 4 Mailroom - Gmail and Google Apps Mail Client screenshot 5
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