IMAP, POP What’s the Difference?

Both IMAP and POP are two methods of accessing emails. IMAP is recommended when you need to check your emails from several different devices, such as a phone, laptop, and tablet. POP is recommended when you need to import your emails from the source without leaving a duplicate.

When Should I Use IMAP?

If You want to access your emails from wherever you are, from any device, use IMAP. When you read your email messages using IMAP, you are actually reading them straight from the email service provider; you are not downloading them to your local computer. This is the reason why you can check your email from different devices, anywhere in the world: your phone, a computer, a friend’s computer, anywhere.

IMAP may be slower than POP because you are actually reading a mirrow of the messages and  attachments; the messages are not automatically downloaded to your local computer.

When Should I Use POP?

Use POP if you want to directly contact your email service and download all of your new messages from source. Once your messages are downloaded onto your PC or Mac, they are deleted from the email service. This means that after the emails are downloaded, they can only be accessed using the same computer. If you try to access your emails from different devices, they won’t be available to you to you.

When configuring emails using Gmail for Android or for Apple devices, or any other desktop email service, it will help a lot if you apply the knowledge you have gained from this page.

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