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Goodbye, Sparrow! 8 Alternatives to Sparrow for Email

Goodbye, Sparrow! 8 Alternatives to Sparrow for Email

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    So, you were looking for a great alternative to Apple’s Mail.app on OS X and iOS and stumbled upon Sparrow. It was fast, handled mail in a comfortable and familiar Gmail fashion, and was full featured. It was all good until you heard that there will be no more new features coming to it because of Google buying out the company. And, if the past is any indication (it is), Sparrow will eventually be discontinued. So, rather than sink with the ship, try one of these 8 Sparrow alternatives to ensure that your email client is covered into the future.

    Mail.app (iOS and OS X)

    It seems counterintuitive to recommend Sparrow to get away from Mail.app and then Mail.app to get away from Sparrow, but Mail.app has proven to be quite the workhorse. With all of the updates that came with Lion last year, Mail.app is definitely a great Mail client to use.

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    Also, because of Mail.app’s integration with OS X and iOS, it’s one of the only ways that you can do fun things like email to OmniFocus inbox or setup some serious rules and filters.

    iCloud Mail is getting better too, but it’s a very minimal version of the desktop client and can only be used with an iCloud email account; so, that’s not very useful for people that use other email accounts and need more robust features that the desktop client offers

    Postbox (Windows and OS X)

    Postbox has been around for a number of years now and the creators consider it to be the best desktop Gmail client for Mac and Windows. Now with Sparrow “gone”, I’d probably have to agree. Postbox is a full featured email client that supports IMAP and POP accounts as well as Exchange (for all of us corporate types out there). Another added nicety is that Postbox supports OmniFocus and Evernote integration. Good stuff.

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    Postbox’s UI feels great in OS X and gives the user a vast set of features like Gmail integration, multiple account support, social network photos for your contacts, a threaded message view and more. Oh, and Postbox is only $9.95.

    Mailplane

    If you are solely a Gmail user and love the Gmail experience, then Mailplane may be the app for you. Mailplane is basically a UI wrapper around the Gmail client for OS X. Mailplane adds a lot of niceties to the web experience of Gmail like being able to get Growl notifications or even link documents on your Mac to an email. You can also have unlimited Gmail accounts in Mailplane.

    Mailplane is a tad expensive ($24.95), especially considering the more feature rich Postbox is less than half that, but if you are a Gmail UI nerd, then Mailplane may work for you.

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    Emailganizer

    When Sparrow for iPhone came out it instantly replaced Mail.app (as much as you can replace Mail.app) on my iPhone, but before that I was using Emailganizer. The only two things I can’t stand about Emailganizer is its shoddy name and its shoddy design and UI. Other than that, Emailganizer is a super powerful app that has some great features like recognition of “context folders” (@action, @waiting, etc.), support for basically any email provider or account type you can think of, add emails as tasks to Exchange, Toodledo, OmniFocus, Things, etc., attach emails to the iOS Calendar, and more.

    Emailganizer is a robust email client for your iPhone. Too bad there isn’t an iPad version yet!

    Outlook for Mac

    No matter what anyone says, Outlook is a pretty great email application and if you are in a medium to large company it’s pretty much standard issue email software. With the newer versions of Outlook you get threaded message views, built in calendar and tasks, extremely intelligent filters and auto responders, searching and filtering on any item and field you could imagine as well as support for any type of email account.

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    It isn’t cheap ($119), but Outlook for Mac is a great email tool that can definitely replace Sparrow on your Mac.

    Notify

    While we can’t say that Notify is a full bore email client, it does a great job of notifying you of and allowing you to preview emails and with its pro features allows you to delete, file them, or respond to them as well. Notify is more of a small app that notifies you of important emails that so you can handle them immediately, which is better than being notified of every email and being interrupted while you are working.

    MailMate

    MailMate for Mac is a full featured IMAP email client. It supports multiple accounts and is highly “keyboard centric”, meaning that the entire app can be driven with keyboard shortcuts. There are also some great unique features like Markdown support in the email compose box as well as “Smart Mailboxes” that allow you to create smart filters and base other smart mailboxes on previous smart mailboxes. The search in MailMate is top notch as well; it’s fast and accurate.

    MailMate is $29.99 but you can pick up a free trial to see if it’s a good alternative for you.

    Mail Pilot

    If you can stay with Sparrow just a little longer (like till the end of Summer?), then you can give Mail Pilot a spin. Mail Pilot got a lot of great press for being the company to “reimagine email”. But, more than marketing fluff, it looks like Mail Pilot might actually do it. Basically, Mail Pilot turns your email into a todo list and lets you mark items as done or even gives you some advanced controls to review them later. Mail Pilot will support all major email services, give you a single login, and even a cool smart “Autopilot” feature that lets you mark specific emails for review at a certain time (like all newsletters for a certain day of the week).

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    CM Smith

    A technologist and writer who shares advice on personal productivity, creativity and how to use technology to get things done.

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    Last Updated on November 5, 2019

    5 Best Language Learning Apps to Master a New Language

    5 Best Language Learning Apps to Master a New Language

    Learning a new language is no easy feat. While a language instructor is irreplaceable, language learning apps have come to revolutionize a lot of things and it has made language learning much easier. Compared to language learning websites, apps offer a more interactive experience to learn a new language.

    The following language learning apps are the top recommended apps for your language learning needs:

    1. Duolingo

      Duolingo is a very successful app that merged gamification and language learning. According to Expanded Ramblings, the app now counts with 300 million users.

      Duolingo offers a unique concept, an easy-to-use app and is a great app to accompany your language acquisition journey. The courses are created by native speakers, so this is not data or algorithm-based.

      The app is free and has the upgrade options with Duolingo Plus for $9.99, which are add free lessons. The mobile app offers 25 languages and is popular for English-speaking learners learning other languages.

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      Download the app

      2. HelloTalk

        HelloTalk aims to facilitate speaking practice and eliminate the stresses of a real-time and life conversation. The app allows users to connect to native speakers and has a WhatsApp like chat that imitates its interface.

        There is a perk to this app. The same native speakers available also want to make an even exchange and learn your target language, so engagement is the name of the game.

        What’s more, the app has integrated translation function that bypasses the difficulties of sending a message with a missing word and instead fills in the gap.

        Download the app

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        3. Mindsnacks

          Remember that Duolingo has integrated gamification in language learning? Well, Mindsnacks takes the concept to another level. There is an extensive list of languages available within the app comes with eight to nine games designed to learn grammar, vocabulary listening.

          You will also be able to visualize your progress since the app integrates monitoring capabilities. The layout and interface is nothing short of enjoyable, cheerful and charming.

          Download the app

          4. Busuu

            Bussu is a social language learning app. It is available on the web, Android, and iOS. It currently supports 12 languages and is free.

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            The functionality allows users to learn words, simple dialogues and questions related to the conversations. In addition, the dialogues are recorded by native speakers, which brings you close to the language learning experience.

            When you upgrade, you unlock important features including course materials. The subscription is $17 a month.

            Download the app

            5. Babbel

              Babbel is a subscription-based service founded in 2008. According to LinguaLift, it is a paid cousing of Duolingo. The free version comes with 40 classes, and does not require you to invest any money.

              Each of the classes starts with with a sequential teaching of vocabulary with the help of pictures. The courses are tailor made and adapted to the students’ level, allowing the learning to be adjusted accordingly.

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              If you started learning a language and stopped, Babbel will help you pick up where you started.

              Download the app

              Takeaways

              All the apps recommended are tailored for different needs, whether you’re beginning to learn a language or trying to pick back up one. All of them are designed by real-life native speakers and so provide you with a more concrete learning experience.

              Since these apps are designed to adapt to different kinds of learning styles, do check out which one is the most suitable for you.

              More About Language Learning

              Featured photo credit: Yura Fresh via unsplash.com

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