What Is Push E-Mail?

Technicalities

To understand push e-mail, it's easier to first comprehend what came first: pull e-mail. Typically, your e-mail is sent to your mail server, where it's stored. You then use an e-mail program to poll the mail server. If there's any new mail, this is essentially dropped to your computer by your e-mail client. Push e-mail cuts out the polling stage, and in effect, your e-mails are pushed straight through to you. This means that you get your e-mails as soon as they arrive without having to "manually" collect them from your mail server.

Approaches

The basic approach is to continue using polling. Basically, the mobile client connects to the server at particular intervals to check for any e-mails. However, obvious flaws are that you're still not immediately aware of any new e-mails. In addition, this is more expensive because the sporadic checking is a bad use of the mobile's resources and the network.

True push provides instant notifications. Here, no open connection is required between the mobile client and the server. However, the server still pushes either the message itself or a message alert to the client to notify of a new message. Due to security issues, data size, and lack of client control over message downloading, an SMS alert is the preferred option over the full text.

Internet Message Access Protocol (IMAP) also provides instant notifications. In this case, the mobile client issues claims of the server, and the server provides information on any new messages. So, if the client is active, it will be continuously updated. This has advantages over true push, which relates to a text message. This may take time to reach the mobile, and the client has to connect to the server, which will cause a short delay. Additionally, true push costs more due to SMS notifications.

Advantages

– You can receive e-mails on your mobile in real time, in other words, as they arrive.

– You can keep up to date with contact details, calendar reminders, and appointment requests.

– This is particularly advantageous for occupations where continuously up-to-date information is important, for example, journalism.

Disadvantages

– If you rely on a text alert system then, this could be included in your text message count. Therefore, the bill for your mobile could increase.

– It could use up the battery on your mobile more quickly because e-mails may have to be transferred more than once.

– Due to the fact that not everyone uses push e-mail, a danger could be that a sender assumes this and believes the recipient received and read the e-mail.

– Being constantly alerted that you've received an e-mail could prove annoying.

In Conclusion

Push e-mail is a system used mainly in conjunction with mobile smartphones. Combine this with instant notification, and it's easy to appreciate why so many view this as a very convenient communication method. Just bear in mind your approach so you can make the most out of it.

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