Review: Newton Mail App and Service

I have been struggling with a long-term email app for years, switching from one and another back and forth from time to time, keep wasting time and effort to set things up, syncing over settings etc. CloudMagic had been one of the most popular third-party email applications in the market and of those I have tried out but not loved and abandoned pretty quickly. But since they rebranded and redesigned itself as Newton Mail and recommended by quite a few top tech bloggers, I have been wanting to try out this app for quite some time.

Heading into subscription-based service makes it very controversial move for the company that quite a few former die-heart CloudMagic users simply put up the worst ever comments and ratings on App Store or Google Play Store pointing this as a “cheap move”. And like many others, I did have hesitation on this but I see and take this in a different perspective after the 14-day trial.

 

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Simple, minimal and functional app

I did try out email apps like Airmail, Mailbox and Outlook for quite a few months, on and off, to manage my main personal and blog email accounts. Airmail is very powerful and does not cost too much as a universal app for iPads and iPhones. The key issues are that the apps are simply overwhelming, and the push notification has been very unstable and inconsistent that it often died when I really needed to keep track on some of the conversations. Being a universal app, the learning curve of using the app has been minimized and users are able to get a single, undifferentiated experience across all these devices.

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For the two month usage of Newton, I found the app to be very intuitive. I would say it is on par with could easily get myself used to how the app works without touching any settings or customization options. It is I have not encountered any of the push notification delays or failures even during my 14-day trial period.

Syncing across multiple platforms and devices

Newton Mail works with Gmail, Exchange, Yahoo Mail, Hotmail/Outlook, iCloud, Google Apps, Office 365 and all IMAP accounts, which is basically all you may have on hand fitting for all the needs. More importantly. I could not find a better representation or slogan than “Sign Up Once, Use Everywhere”. The Newton account is accessible across all Apple (iPhone, iPad, iPad Pro, Apple Watch or Mac) and Android devices. With the Newton account, users can get all your email accounts, customized preferences and settings synced instantly across devices.

 

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This is by far one of the best characteristics that I like about Newton Mail. I have got a number of devices, both Apple and Android and I usually simply pick up any device nearest to me to check out social media and email notifications. Without much learning required, no matter it is an unread email or email drafts, I can easily pickup where I left off from any of my devices without any issue or additional steps required.

The Supercharges

The core element of the paid, premium service is here – the Supercharges functionalities added to my mailbox, including:

  • Instant push notifications for all types of email services
  • Snooze emails to read at convenience
  • Connected productivity apps (e.g. Todoist, Evernote, Pocket, etc)
  • Sender Profile revealing the background of the senders
  • Read Receipts for notification of read-status of emails sent via Newton
  • Send Later to schedule emails
  • Remind if not replied
  • Undo Send to pull back email blunder
  • Newly added One-click unsubscribe to keep away from unwanted spam

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There are tons of capabilities that Newton Mail can do, including 2-factor authentication, custom inbox swipes, Handoff support for Apple devices, save attachments to cloud storage services, custom folder sync, email aliases, Touch ID, 3D Touch, unified inbox…and many others.

My most beloved feature goes to Read Receipt. This is very importantly to me to get notified on whether or not the email I sent has been read. It helps me to understand the effectiveness of the email responses. It also saves me time to send unnecessary follow-up emails as I didn’t know if the previous email has reached and read by the recipients. And honestly speaking, it helps me out to identify the potential of business partnership by looking at the turnaround time between read time and response time, and eventually more effective in spending time engaging with good potential counterparts.

Does $50 a year worth it?

There are quite a few the 1-star ratings on the App Store and Google Play Store. Many users got screwed with the company’s new pricing strategy. Either or not loyal CloudMagic email app users do not seem pleased with the so-called “cheap change” from free service to paid subscription. People generally need basic functionality out of email clients and services for checking emails, receiving push notifications, unified inbox that Microsoft, Apple and Google currently offers for free. Making push notification a premium feature, which many could have thought as a basic necessity of an email app, seems to be the root cause of tremendous hate on this move and churn users away, not to say converting users to opt in and pay for the service. This sounds a more fair and understandable judgement from normal customer point of view than the reason that the app lacks web support and Windows App.

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I do respect the move as this practice getting more popular across different apps and services in the market. It creates reasonable revenue for app developers and service providers that makes the service more sustainable, supporting continuous app development and refinement and maintenance of service. Literally, $50 a year is not the most affordable pricing. For the what you pay, or less if you have subscribed with the holiday discount like I did, not only you are getting the app itself, but also reliable cloud service and responsive tech support cohering with delivery of best user experience possible.

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Final Thoughts

But overall speaking, Newton has been the best email management experience that I have ever had with all the apps that I tried since I started my side business with the blog. Not that I am sponsored with lifetime access for this positive comment. The fact is, the Newton app does works better than CloudMagic app which was quite clunky as far as I recall. In terms of app usage, it is basically identical to what I was very used to with Mailbox, the minimalistic email app acquired by Dropbox earlier this year. There is no ads, no pop up for rating or bloat. The app is straightforward, user-friendly, clean and simple in interface and color coding and intuitive button locations and gestures. The experience of using the app has been snappy, smooth with no crashes on all my Apple and Android devices.

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In terms of functionality, the supercharge elements fulfilled all my need for both my personal and business email inboxes and all of them work very well so far. Last but not least, the service has been very consistent, no server error, no push delays, that all contribute to a reliable and convincing user experience.

If you are interested in trying out Newton Mail, head over the App Store or Google Play Store to download the Newton Mail app and start your 14-day trial before opting into the subscription. Check out

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One Comment Add yours

  1. Newton is great from companion app point of view. It really works seamless across all devices with email as tasks and read receipts. Paying 50$/y is great when Newton team will be on the fast track to deliver new features.

    After 4 months of usage as a paid user Newton sent an email and announced Newton is ready for Business. For 50$/y you can expect that this app suite is business ready…but it is not and this is why:
    – A Business Ready Email client understands to format HTML message but Newton cannot format properly. The result is that HTML emails are not readable when the width is big. The font becomes unreadable. Resizing does not work because the email gets cut on the right edge. Sometimes I figured out that HTML tags are visible and the rest of the email is totally messed up.
    – For Business use I need to open several emails at once for copy past for example, Newton does not allow to open emails in a separate window just the one that you compose.
    – When Business Ready it would allow to add inline attachments within the text but Newton does not allow inline attachments its just attaching the image.

    Agreed, those are basic features that every other email client can handle but Newton cannot. 50$/y is not acceptable without the ability to provide feature comparison to other email clients after approx 5 months of enforcing subscription.

    Like

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