Foxmail, An Email Client for Your Desktop

Foxmail is a desktop email client for both Windows and Mac operating systems, provided by the popular Chinese company Tencent (creators of QQ IM service along with other internet based products).

Foxmail has all the basics you need in an email client, along with added extras such as a calendar view and optional threaded conversations layout. Installation on the Mac is as simple and painless as ever, and setting up various accounts takes only a few minutes. The Windows version, however, is only in Chinese. This is clearly a detriment if you don’t speak or read Chinese, and I was surprised to see that instead of an English varient, as advertised on their website.

Despite the rather obvious language barrier, what I did glean from the short time I had Foxmail open was that it houses a number of features that eclipses its OS X counterpart (Foxmail 7.1 on Windows, and 1.2 on OS X). On top of the aforementioned calendar, there is a contacts area and (what I assume is) support for better encrypted email. Of course, I can’t say for certain so I could very well stand corrected.

The Mac version, as mentioned previously, has some of the above though less to offer. Within the settings, you can easily edit your email signatures and multiple accounts. You can even set photos for each one. One seemingly random but cool feature is the ability to take a screenshot — either of parts of your desktop or the client window — and lightly edit it. ‘Seemingly random’ being the key words, as upon further inspection of Foxmail’s homepage, there is also the option to download their free screen capture tool, Snip, available for OS X10.6.8 and higher.

Included in Foxmail’s capture tool are a circle, rectangle, arrow, freehand, and text tool with 6 color options. You can resize the edits you’ve made and move them around the screen freely, making it easy and fun to use. Though bafflingly enough, I could not find where the screenshot saved at all. Chances are that in order to access them, you may have to download their full screen capture program, mentioned above.

The biggest issue I take with Foxmail is the false advertising when it comes to the Windows version. While the site has a screenshot of the program in plain English, the download is in Chinese. This is extremely off-putting, and if there does exist an English-language download, it should be labeled clearly on the website. Across the board, a lack of unified inbox isn’t the worst in the world, but it is worth noting. There are, of course, hotkeys to switch smoothly from account to account.

Overlooking the cons, Foxmail as a desktop email client is capable and clean, leaving no room for pretention. The layout is intuitive, the program itself a dream, and it gets the job done well.

Foxmail is available for Windows and Mac OS X 10.7+.


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