Internet giant Google has finally and rather quietly enabled IMAP (Internet Message Access Protocol) support for its Gmail email service.
Now, Gmail users are beginning to see an IMAP option that has been enabled by default in their online account settings.
The newly added IMAP support will make Google’s Gmail service much more useful to those who access their mail accounts remotely.
Incidentally, Gmail already had support for free POP that enabled the user to keep a downloaded database of emails offline.
Using IMAP, the user’s mail is stored on the server, allowing him/her to use a client to access their mail. Thus, users would find it really easy to access their emails from multiple devices. Moreover, the user can access his/her mail via the desktop client, read mail, make changes and have those changes mirrored by any other client accessing that account.
Also, if the user accesses his Gmail account from multiple machines, IMAP will allow them all to stay in sync.
Gmail’s IMAP service is currently available for the following email clients:
Interestingly, the newly announced IMAP support for Gmail has been announced for several devices one of which includes the “revolutionary” Apple iPhone.
Google is currently offering IMAP in a phased limited rollout. As of now, only a few people have access to it. However, this will change as soon as the rollout for IMAP support has been made in larger numbers.