POP vs IMAP

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KONICA MINOLTA DIGITAL CAMERAOkay, I admit it. I don’t always know everything. This is precisely why I called GoDaddy last week. No matter what I did and what settings I used I couldn’t get my email to send properly on my new iPhone. What I didn’t expect out of the phone call was for the technical service representative to give me a better way to send and receive email across my whole business network.

If you are like me you have your email address set up on multiple devices. I love being able to check my email when I’m on my PC with a big monitor, my laptop when I’m holding a sleeping baby in the recliner, and/o my iPhone when I’m running around with one of our boys. Unfortunately I’ve always had to delete emails on each device separately because I didn’t realize there was an easier way. That all changed yesterday I was introduced to IMAP.

To help you understand IMAP (if you don’t already know), it will help to understand how POP works as well. Following is my POP vs IMAP comparison with the help of several other sources.

POP
According to geek.com, ‘POP’ stands for Post Office Protocol. Email arrives to your inbox which acts much like the mailbox in front of your house. This is the only place where emails are held. If you have your email address set up as POP on multiple devices, the extra devices essentially receive a duplicate of every email.

Key Points to Remember for POP

  • Deleting an email from one device will not delete it from the rest.
  • Folders created to file emails into are only accessible by the device those folders are made on. Therefore, if you file an email into a folder for “Client A” on your PC, there will not be a “Client A” folder on your laptop unless you make one there as well.
  • If something happens to the device you have your emails saved  on, those emails could be gone forever.

IMAP
Geek.com taught me that ‘IMAP’ stands for Internet Message Access Protocol. With this system, emails live on the server. Once an email is deleted from one device, it will be deleted from all because you’ve deleted the master copy. There are no duplicates.

In many ways, IMAP is like cloud computing. All your info is stored somewhere out there for you to access anywhere and anytime you want.

Key Points to Remember for IMAP

  • Deleting an email from one device will delete it from ALL devices.
  • Folders created to file emails should be made on the server rather than locally so that emails may continue to be read from all devices.
  • If something happens to one of your devices, you will still have access to your emails from all other devices. If you have no other devices, you will be able to pick up where you left off once your device is repaired or replaces.

I’m such a nerd that after learning about IMAP I purposely deleted emails from my PC just so I could watch them disappear from my laptop and phone.

I can’t promise that I will be able to explain this any better to you, however if you need help setting up your email accounts, we can do that! Visit our Virtual Assistant page for more information!

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About suttoncreativestudios

Kim and her husband, Dave, happily work side-by-side every day at Sutton Creative Studios. A full-service administrative and graphic design firm, the fun and excitement never stops in this shop!
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One Response to POP vs IMAP

  1. Pingback: IMAP Account Migration using Hexamail Downloader | IMAP Migration Procedure

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