Email is what defines work for many of us and managing it can be a pain point, especially on smartphones. However there are apps that can seamlessly manage emails, keep a tab on important meetings, and remind us of things that need to be done.
Outlook, Inbox, CloudMagic, Cisco Spark are just a few top apps designed for professionals, with options to sync in calendars, phone contacts and more. Here’s a quick look at these apps and what they offer.
Outlook works very well for iOS users. The biggest advantage of the app is that it is a one-stop platform for a number of different accounts and covers almost all major email services. Outlook supports Office 365, Exchange (which makes it just the right app for organising official mails), Yahoo, iCloud, Google and IMAP.
Outlook divides the contents of your mailbox into two major categories- Focused and Other. Within these categories, you can mark a particular mail as unread, or see click to see attachments and flag mails. You can simply swipe right to archive a mail or left to schedule it.
One of the most useful features of Outlook is that it has a separate section for files which shows all the attachments at one place. You can download to view doc files, PDFs or images. It has a sub-section that shows you everything that you have on your Google Drive and Dropbox. You can easily make changes to documents and save them on the go. It even syncs with your Google Calendar, which can be easily accessed from an option in the bottom panel. You can save important dates like birthdays, anniversaries and meetings all in one place.
The app also shows your phone contact list within itself, so that you can make a call without exiting Outlook. The feature comes in handy when you suddenly remember that you had to make an important call right in the middle of replying to a message. Outlook, basically takes care of everything that you might need while working, be it an easy access to Google Drive, Calendar or even contact list.
Inbox by Gmail is quick, saves time, organizes mails by categorising them based on subjects, and lets users set reminders or snooze on an email. Inbox makes life easier for all of us, sorting the deluge of emails, thanks to its in-built labels like Finance, Travels, Purchases, etc, and bundles them together. You can also swipe a whole section as ‘done’ and these emails no longer occupy the top spot in your Inbox. Don’t worry, ‘done’ doesn’t delete the emails, just marks them as read.
Inbox shows you card-based highlights, which means that you see the mail with its contents such as attachments or pictures, without even opening it.
Snooze eliminates the need to create reminders to get things done. You can just swipe right to snooze an email, set date, time etc. So, those mails which are relevant for some time in the future can be easily snoozed, ensuring you don’t miss them.
Inbox also has a series of automated replies to choose from like ‘Approved’, ‘Will do it’, ‘Please go ahead’ and more. You can choose one of these to save time when you’re on the go to reply to an email. Inbox is however, invite-only for now.
CloudMagic is similar to Outlook as it works like an integrated platform for a number of email services such as Exchange, Outlook, Yahoo Mail, IMAP, iCloud, Gmail. It manages your mails, contacts and calendars seamlessly.
The app shows all your messages in one place but you can choose to see the unread ones or starred mails. Preferences can be set manually. CloudMagic has folders like Personal, Receipts, Travel, Work and Scheduled for organising email apart from the regular Starred, Trash, Spam etc.
CloudMagic has a bulk edit mode, wherein you can choose multiple mails to perform actions like deleting them, to archive them or mark read. These can be done individually by swiping right on specific mails. The app comes with a CloudMagic Cards feature that allows users to add, save and edit notes on tools such as Evernote, etc. Also, you can sync calendars to access them right from the CloudMagic app.
It offers a lock option, which I think is one of its most useful features. This one allows you to lock your inbox so that people cannot read your mails even if they have your phone.
Although CloudMagic offers features quite like Outlook, it is not as user-friendly as the latter.
Cisco Spark takes managing official work and schedules to a whole new level by allowing video calls and making groups for sharing data.
The app provides a work-like office environment even on email, and is specifically designed for professionals, who need to share lots of files, folders, documents with a group or team. It seeks to organise your professional life by minimising the need for too many mails by letting teams stay in constant touch.
One can create either a group chat room or 1-to-1 room. The chat rooms can be marked as important, which will show in a separate list. Similarly, chat rooms can be marked as Favourite and unread messages will appear in a separate tab. All of these options can be easily accessed from a panel at the top. Files can be attached from any cloud storage or from the desktop or smartphone and sent to the group.
A group virtual chat room can support up to 25 participants. Users have control over receiving a message, ignoring a call or leaving a group. The app also supports a Meetings tab, which shows upcoming meetings in the next 24 hours based on the type of calendars synced with the app. Also, users get notifications if someone mentions you using ‘@’ in a group.