10 Alternatives to Gmail

Using Gmail doesn’t have to be a ‘given’ when choosing an email account. There are features that it doesn’t offer, or you may just not like the idea of going with a large company for your email needs.

Here are ten alternatives to using Gmail that may be right up your alley.

1. Thunderbird – Thunderbird’s easy installation process will have you up and running in no time. The program itself automatically updates, protects you against phishing attacks and strives hard to reduce any spam that may strike your email doorstep. The software is open source, so new add-ons and plug-ins are being created all the time.

2. GMX – Gather all of your email accounts into one with a GMX account. Access your mail from your phone or web browser. You can store up to 5GB in your personal email account with 50MB allotted for any one message. GMX’s servers run on green electricity generated from renewable energy.

3. FastMail – FastMail offers business email and free personal email. Some features of the free account include 25MB email storage and the ability to make instant photo galleries. You have plenty of domain names to choose from if you don’t like Fastmail.fm.

4. Yahoo Mail – It is easy to see why Yahoo Mail has been a perennial favorite. You can attach files up to 25MB and check your mail on the go. Yahoo Mail’s best features are the functionality that you can find in your inbox. You can add and edit Flickr images, you can send files up to 100MB easily through drop.io, and you can even send money through Paypal within your Yahoo Mail account.

5. Hotmail – Microsoft Hotmail includes plenty of features, including advanced spam protection and emailing on the go. You can check the email from any separate accounts that you have so everything is in one place.

6. Zoho Mail – There free version of Zoho mail offers personalized email addresses, instant messaging with the popular IM accounts and no advertisements. Zoho is offered both remotely and offline, so you can compose your messages to perfection before sending them into the world.

7. Lavabit – Lavabit’s basic account offers virus protection, 128MB of storage and up to 64MB in your outgoing message size. You can encrypt your files before sending them across the internet. Lavabit even offers antiviral protection.

8. Bigstring – BigString lets you retrieve your emails before they get read, destroy emails, recall or change them. You have full control, including print control and storage control. You can set a limit on the number of times that your recipient looks at the email that you’ve set, or even prints it. Finally, you have full email control.

9. Windows Live Mail – You can access all of your email accounts through Windows Live Mail and you are offered the security and protection of spam filtering on all of those accounts. This email system really shines with its event sharing features. You can access your calendars online or offline, even remotely. Your events can be shared with the rest of the world and you can synchronize your calendar with your friends.

10. Hushmail – Hushmail adds PGP (pretty good protection) encryption to every email that goes out and still remains easy to use. The application works on the BlackBerry and IPhone as well as offering Optional Outlook Integration. You can keep your data and email safe from prying eyes with the world’s most secure web based free email service.

These email applications bring features to the table that Gmail doesn’t offer. If you are dissatisfied with your Gmail account, give one of these a try.

This is a Guest Post by James Adams. He is an analyst and blogger working for Cartridge Save where he analyzes products such as the HP 339. He also helps to maintain their design blog.


34 Responses to 10 Alternatives to Gmail

  1. subzero525 June 20, 2010 at 10:57 AM #

    i like yahoo mail it one of my favorites despite some bad services it is still my best

  2. nipon June 20, 2010 at 1:05 PM #

    I am also using yahoomail.

  3. Jackass June 20, 2010 at 7:21 PM #

    No.1 on the list Thunderbird is a mail client. You need a mail account somewhere to use thunderbird.

  4. Andrew A. Sailer June 21, 2010 at 3:48 AM #

    Hi there may I use some of the information here in this post if I provide a link back to your site?

  5. Dona Howell June 22, 2010 at 3:50 AM #

    I think the article was a satire–a joke. Gmail is about so much more than email–such as the alerts and the docs. I didn’t see anything in the 10 that Gmail doesn’t offer so that’s a clue he was trying to be funny.

    • John May 14, 2013 at 3:53 AM #


  6. roomeyda June 22, 2010 at 3:52 PM #

    Gmail is the best mail. nothing spam and easy for use

    • wilco October 17, 2013 at 6:17 AM #

      In bed with spy agencies, that’s gmail for you.

  7. Rob June 22, 2010 at 8:51 PM #

    Thunderbird does not provide email service. It is an application used for accessing your email service; such as Gmail.

    As for the rest of the list, none of them come even close to offering what Gmail gives you.

    • wilco October 17, 2013 at 6:18 AM #

      Now the others are catching up. And some of them are outside the U.S., so no spying.

  8. aditia June 23, 2010 at 8:09 AM #

    I’m still using Gmail and Yahoomail, once i have tried fastmail about 4 years ago and they are still strong

  9. Dominik June 27, 2010 at 10:00 AM #

    I think thunderbird is a mail client, and i use it with gmail

  10. Fatima Ali June 28, 2010 at 8:00 PM #


    I dont think anything can compare to the services of gmail. I prefer Gmail on all.

  11. voxdan May 3, 2011 at 11:21 AM #

    To the, um, ignorant people suggesting that this is a joke or that gmail is simply the best thing ever, there are many reasons why people might like to leave gmail, by which I really mean google. Privacy concerns and political leanings are at the top of the list. They have a few great products and gmail is one of them, but there are people out there who are more interested in principle than whether their email works well with google docs.

    • chuckSaldana April 12, 2012 at 8:38 PM #

      Completely agree with you …

    • Buzz October 12, 2013 at 7:07 AM #

      Privacy is indeed a big issue when dealing with Google. Years ago they admitted they scan your emails for advertising purposes. As an SEO, this makes me wonder what else they try and learn from your email traffic. Do they uses Gmail to measure what’s popular, what people are talking about? Do they use it to learn more about the popularity of eCommerce sites? Do they use it to detect link trades? Point is, I don’t trust them one bit.

      @author: Lavabit is no longer in business. And secondly, I personally recommend Opera’s free email service as an alternative to Google’s Gmail.

      • wilco October 17, 2013 at 6:20 AM #

        Although these revelations about Google spying are supposedly recent, there have been allegations for years. I’ve found references to Google spying on users and passing the info to N S A and C I A from 2004, 2007, 2008, etc. Unfortunately, no one took these alarms seriously until lately. Now Google wants to use your personal information to sell more ads.
        No thanks. Like FB and the other social media sites, Google just doesn’t understand that privacy trumps making selling advertisements.

  12. Slim July 12, 2011 at 10:40 PM #

    Gmail knows EVERY detail about you including what you like and dislike, your browsing prefs and every mail or document you have ever sent via gmail. They are accumulating power and information much too aggressively to suit me. I like some privacy.


    • wilco October 17, 2013 at 6:22 AM #

      Google would know LESS about people if people STOP using Google, but most people are too much like sheep and blindly use Google for everything. To maintain more (but not perfect) privacy, just do not use Google. Period.

  13. HdB July 19, 2011 at 10:14 AM #

    If you have nothing to say, you can do it here.

  14. Cult Doctor August 5, 2011 at 8:31 PM #

    Check out at least the description of the book Search and Destroy by Cleland. Even if you are a honest, law abiding individual, this is still disturbing.

  15. John Boyd September 17, 2011 at 1:29 AM #

    GMX is cool but the dang thing won’t send mail from Outlook Express. Cannot connect to server. Anyone have a fix for this? I’ve tried the alternate ports and disabling virus scan. ARGGG!!!

  16. mary October 19, 2011 at 7:51 PM #

    i’m just frustrated with gmail because all the decent usernames are taken, at least for my first & last. i use my personal email professionally, so it’s a pain when i constantly have to spell out my very long email address

  17. Vila December 9, 2011 at 9:48 AM #

    Gmail new look just sucks.
    I am changing it right now!

  18. tom January 5, 2012 at 2:17 AM #

    I came here looking for an alternative to gmail since the new look is going to destroy it. Unfortunately I can’t take the article serious when it can’t tell the difference between a mail reader like Thunderbird and an email service like gmail or yahoo mail.

  19. Paul Odtaa January 7, 2012 at 5:46 AM #

    The new look Gmail is problematic. As I work with elderly people I find the interface causing a lot of problems. These include:

    On a cheap, out of date computer the inbox is very difficult to see.
    To check box to select and email almost invisible.
    The themes do not allow you to change the background or the colour of the icons.

    The icons are far more confusing than the old text buttons.
    The fact they don’t appear until an email is selected puts older people off.

    The slider on the conversations sidebar requires far greater control, bad for someone with arthritis, is irritating.

    However, the worse thing is the obvious Google strategy of forcing the changes on everyone as there is no option to opt back to the old format.

    Google, ‘the do no evil’ corporation is becoming something that Darth Vader would approve and as arrogant as Microsoft.

    Thanks for the post it’s given me something to think about.

    • Sad at Changes May 8, 2012 at 8:16 AM #

      I have to say that Paul’s comments are the most consise version I have seen yet in explaining the difficulties of older people in using Gmail. The last time I looked, the largest demographic is baby boomers – people who are primed to be Gmail users, but will now be searching for an alternative.

      This means either Google has an opportunity to fix the changes and capture a huge audience, or another company can capture that audience and shift some of the ‘power’ of the ‘do no evil’ company around.

  20. robbo May 26, 2012 at 10:40 AM #

    ….have used gmail for years and years now, but lately—-while working overseas—-gmail does not give me incoming mail [outgoing works, i know].
    Used to hate yahoo, but at least it is working both ways. Gmail provides no visible feedback forum for quick contact, so far as i can tell. Thus, will gladly look toward decent alternatives to Gmail —- change is good sometimes.

  21. richard May 9, 2013 at 7:10 PM #

    Just a quick comment to those complaining of the “look” – err, then use an email client and connect via IMAP. Easy and problem solved. Obviously if you are worried about Google’s data policies then thats a different matter.

  22. Simon June 14, 2013 at 2:17 PM #

    Email is the backbone of your online identity. I like to keep it in control by devide and conquer, I use one email address for private messages, one for business and ShopAunt for Shopping/E-Commerce.

  23. Timo June 30, 2013 at 10:01 AM #

    I chose a Switzerland-based Neomailbox.net service, which focuses on privacy and security. GMail account will serve as a secondary email.

  24. Alex August 16, 2013 at 12:53 AM #

    Warning: GMX are flakey.

    I tried GMX: migration was great, all my company and private email there, their site works fine, then after a week suddenly my account was blocked.

    I am a regular guy and have never been involved with spam, anything illicit or nefarious.

    I asked them why, and have not received an answer. I then searched “GMX blocked account” and found a lot of people have this problem, or bitch about their slow service.

    That is a great shame. Perhaps if they would charge us for service, we might get some service that works, but until then I am still looking for a decent non-google service.

  25. Max October 28, 2013 at 4:00 AM #

    I use Thexyz for my android as it works like exchange but for only a fraction of the cost. It also adds push email and they have a good mobile app in Google Play that is free – thexyz.com

  26. wilco October 17, 2013 at 6:16 AM #

    The new Outlook.com is very good. It has features that Gmail doesn’t offer (and vice versa). But it is an alternative.

    GMX is also good, and since it is not one of the big boys in the area, less likely to have your data snooped at by agencies that spy. Google is in bed with spy agencies. Google has gathered so much information about people that all spy orgs have to do is to make a bargain that Larry cannot refuse.

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