A better email client for the Mac?

Hello all,
Has anyone found a OS X email client that they prefer over the client provided by Apple? It is possible that I haven't learned some tricks, but I have called the Apple Accessibility line and the support tech was stumped as well on some of my questions. My biggest issue is locating hyperlinks that are strewn throughout a large email (40-50) page email. Is Outlook 2016 truly accessible? I tried the first beta version earlier this Spring, but found it as accessible as Office 2011.
Any guidance is greatly appreciated.
Thank you in advance,


RE: A Better email client?

I personally use and wholeheartedly recommend MailMate. Everything is accessible except the attachment viewing screen [can not recall proper name at the moment]. The flexibility of the program is beyond what you will most likely need but it is without question the most worthwhile e-mail client for Mac OS X. I am using it on 10.11 El Capitan public betas and it works just as flawlessly as it does on 10.10 Yosemite. It is worth the price in my humble opinion and one definitely gets for what one pays.

RE: MailMate

Brotha J:
Thank you for the post, I will check it out. I totally agree with the statement: "You get what you pay for.".

Very Deep

But is it any good?

When I last used it, there was some very weird behaviour with handling Sent mail, and the flags (read/unread, etc) weren't accessible. Has this changed?

better mail client

Can anyone englighten me as to how the native mnail client on OSX is bad? It does everything I need it to do for me and more and I couldn't imagine using anything else.

RE: Very deep

Since when did you last use it? I have no trouble handling sent mail [which is a very vague description of the issue you experienced] and the flags are conveyed to me understandably. I think that is only a matter of overriding VoiceOver descriptions on images or something to that affect.

RE: better mail client

For the great masses of unwashed Mac OS users such as yourself [and that is not a judgement] it is not bad. If it suits you use it. It does not suit me and the other folks who use MailMate to say the least. If it is not broke do not fix it. The native Mail client is not ‘bad’ but is surely is not capable of what I want.

Re: Mail mate

Hmm, maybe i should check that one out too. It had some neat tricks for handling mailing lists, which is good. Only trouble at least for this grumpy old fart is that it seems to have a massive learning curve if you want to use the advanced features of the client. I am definitely no good at programming whatsoever, even Workflow for iOs goes way, way, way over my head so i wonder how much of Mail mate i'd understand. Where do i get it by the way?

RE: Re: Mail Mate

It does contain a massive learning curve. Some customisations are as low-level as it gets. It can be downloaded at freron.com.

OS X native email client

My first issue is vack in Mavericks the physical flow of the page changed. Prior to 10.10.9 I started off in my Mailboxes list, then VO right took me to the list of messages and their attributes with a preview and then another VO right into the body of the message. Now I have to VO left multiple times to get to a message list. VO right puts me into the message preview of whatever message is highlighted. When I ask a sighted person they state that left to right the layout is Mailboxes, Message list, Preview.
My other issue is I maintain 7 email accounts between personal, work and other organizations I am involved with, and receive around 100 emails a day. I spend more time maneuvering my mailbox list than I do reading, responding or composing. An "All inboxes" folder exists in iOS, it would be a nice option in OS X.
Many of my mail messages are 40+ pages in length and OS X Mail doesn't provide an easy way navigate the message. Same with hyperlinks. I often have messages with more than 50 links in the message and there isn't a good way to get to the one I want/need quickly.

RE: OS X better email client

Seems as though MailMate would suit you well. It is designed for fifty or more e-mail accounts and has an All Messages feature. The latest version is more adept to handle more than fifty e-mail accounts simultaneously as noted in the release notes.


I have downloaded the 40 day trial of MailMate but haven't gotten around to performing the install yet. Hoping to have some free time this weekend to dig into it. I also looked at GyazMail, but there is no import for existing mail settings and you have to enter all information manually. The flow of the GUI felt fairly clean so I will probably setup a couple of my accounts and give it a whirl as well.
P.S. I totally agree with your statement: "If isn't broken, don't fix it.". For most users Mac Mail is a perfectly good and useable option, but as in everything else in life there are always a few who need something more flexible or additional features.

Learning curve of Mailmate

I guess i want to ask how much of the low level customization you need, which of course isn't an easy question but i do not want to hack anything if i can avoid it because that would probably end up a disaster.

RE: MailMate

MailMate has a wizard that imports accounts from Apple Mail and it does it flawlessly. MailMate is IMAP only which means the existing accounts must use the IMAP protocol. The main interface is straightforward and the message pane can be hidden for privacy reasons or whatever other reasons. There is also a very original feature called Distortion Mode that screams Lorem Ipsum, also really useful for screenshots and other scenarios.

RE: Learning curve of Mailmate

None of the low-level customisations are necessary; they are all optional but improve the user's experience on a very individualistic basis.

Ok, are we talking Apple script here?

So as the subject line says, are we talking apple scripting here? I'm sorry to ask so many stupid questions, i guess what it all boils down to in the end is that i want to try out Mailmate but am afraid i will not understand it at all. It seems very geeky to me but i could be wrong.

It was quite a while back I

It was quite a while back I last used it. I'll give it another shot sometime.

Yes, the images in the message list table. Are those labeled or do they just say "Image"?

Sent mail. When sending mail sometimes I found the messages didn't appear in my Sent folder, or that they were duplicated, or other obvious weirdness. Again, I'll try things out later and see how it is.

RE: Ok, are we talking about Apple script here?

Not that I recall. The low-level customisations involves the creation and edition of property list [PLIST] files. Those have syntax and can be quite complicated but these are on the simple end of the spectrum. Again, customising to that degree is not necessary and it will work sufficiently for you as is pre-configured.

Apple mail is painful.

Apple mail is painful.

Do you need to manage multiplwe accounts? Well, get prepared to VO left and right thousands of times to get where you want.
Do you need to read liong e-mails? So sorry for you my old mate ....
Need to access quickly attachments? Good luck, bilieve me yiou will need it a lot.

The interface to voiceover is confused, cluttered, slow. The whole thing is a fail.
Using conversation? Go through a slow and painful suffering while you hear that bla bla triangle colapsed while you just want to listen quickly to the conversation subject because you really have more interesting things to do than loosing your short time hearing that verbose thing.

It'd be much better if there were thre groups
One with a treeview with each root node being one account and each children nodes being the folders (inbox, bla bla).
Another with the current conversation list.
Inside of this conversations would render as "unread subhject x messages unread of x messages in conversation".
Third one with preview and search related features.
Tab key or vo left and right moving from one to the other group.
Messages infull window showing using anything VO can render well, if there is such an interface. If iPhone renders it well Mac should have a way of doing that. Using webviews? Well we can dream.
Links rendered as ........ links and attachments rendering either as links or as a list of files.

Strangely Apple has a way of doing things that are inversely proporsional in Mac and IOS: the easier it is in IOS the harder it is on Mac for whatever reazon.
These days I use an external keyboard amd IOS mail client as my main mail system. The interface is not what I talk above but is much more usable than Mac's mail.

RE: Apple Mail is painful

I couldn't agree more! Yes, I have 7 active email accounts and it is much easier to manage mail on my iPhone than on my Mac. Brother J suggested MailMate and it is a thousand times better than the native app.
The flow of the GUI just makes more sense and they let you modify almost everything down to such a granular level it can be a bit intimidating when you first go into preferences, but you end up with the experience that meets your needs.
here is a novel idea: HTML emails utilize the web rotor (VO-U) and you can navigate headings and links without reading 40 out 50 pages to find what you want.
They offer a free trial and there is an import wizard so you can quickly get up and running with the out-of-the-box configuration. The development team for Mac Mail really needs to look at products like MailMate and Outlook and start over again.

Mailmate is painful

After having looked at Mailmate i can only say that i now flinch from the notion that i must check my mails every once in a while. Where, how, what?
There are in principle 2 things in Mailmate that really is incompatible with my workflow when reading mail: 1, you have no way at all of knowing where there are new mails if you don't skip the nice stuff alltogether and read mail the traditional way, but then what's the point of all the snazzy smart mailboxes? Not anywhere in the messages table can you see how many messages there are in your mailbox like in Apple mail where it clearly states that there are X number of messages in the mailbox and no, i shouldn't have to do a vo+f2 only to see how many messages there are, talk about clumsy and tedious. Unless anyone can help me out with this problem, i'll consider this thing alone a deal breaker.
2, this isn't such a biggy after all but quite annoying when you're used to the kind of automatic reading that Mail provides: the mail isn't read automatically when you open a mail in Mailmate.
And for those talking about unnecessary info being read in Mail such as "disclosure triangle collapsed" and so on, how about this gathered from Mailmates messages table when reading with voiceover: "Replacement character for object None, replacement character for object Unread" and so on.
Having said this though, there's much with Mailmate i like: The precise filtering where you can get down to very tiny details making sure your rules are very exact, the fact that mailing lists get their own smart folders without you having to do anything to get to them and edit them and the load of keyboard shortcuts plus the fact that Mailmate supports or will support openPGP natively. If only i could see how many messages are in a folder i select without having to push extra keys or hacking PList files that probably would break anyway if i as much as touch them, this would be a really good mail client. And while i'm at it can i collapse threads and know how many messages are in a thread before i delete it?

I did not play with other

I did not play with other mail clients on Mac but the fact that they do not behave reazonably with VO does not mean Apple mail does. Based on your findings I wouldn't consider neither options acessible.
May be outlook 2016 will do the trick for you. I need to check it out but the outlook interface on Windows is a dream. If it keeps the way it is also on Mac it would be great.

Update Mailmate and my workflow

I spoke to the author of Mailmate and he confirms that Voiceover doesn't read message counts either in the threads nor in the message window. He said that message counts in threads wasn't there at all but if he would consider it it should be working for VO as well. Regarding my workflow i find that it's much slower in Mailmate so if the guy who posted about it here would like to tell me how he uses Mailmate i'd be happy to hear because as i said in my earlier post there are things i much like to do that's not available in the standard mail client but at least for me, working with Mailmate is more time consuming than it should be, but then maybe i'm just plain old stupid, wouldn't surprice me.


I have two problems with apple mail, ever since os 10.9, it takes forever for apple mail to retrieve my mail from my gmail account. Also, apple mail has never had read receipts, I want something where I can have read receipts sent, I'm hoping malemute does this.