Only recently, personal e-mail addresses were a real luxury. Internet providers used to offer their clients a few megabytes of disk space for storing e-mail. As a rule, these services were not free, and users were required to pay a monthly fee. The first free e-mail services appeared later, and that was the beginning of their development and growth of popularity. The reason was simple: everyone wanted to have a personal e-mail address, even those who used the Internet once a month, since having an e-mail showed a certain level of personal image. As soon as getting an e-mail box became absolutely free, and users could easily access their mail from any computer with the Internet connection, e-mails became immensely popular and common.
First companies to offer free email services were Yahoo with Yahoo Mail Service and MSN with Hotmail. Then many companies started providing free mail services on the regional level. As a result, now we have a great many opportunities to get a free personal e-mail address and a mail box. The broad choice only satisfies all customers' needs but also makes free e-mail providers compete with each other, improving their services, offering more disk space for mail messages, and additional services. In this article we will talk about the criteria to be considered by user when choosing a free e-mail service provider.
1) Email address format - think about the e-mail address that you will get from a certain provider. It is always better to have a short name, which is easy to write and remember. For example, email@example.com is definitely better than firstname.lastname@example.org .
2) Disk space for incoming and outgoing messages. The more space the better. 1 GB is a typical size of a mailbox as for today. It is especially important when you are plan to send big files via email, for example, photographs, music, home video fragments, etc.
3) Web interface convenience - usually you will use web interface to access your mail box, so it is important how easy and convenient it is. If you are to read long advertisements before entering your inbox massages, think about other mail service providers.
4) Ability to get and send mail via POP3 and SMTP protocols. When you access your email from your home personal computer, it is more comfortable to use a mail agent like Outlook Express or The Bat! to get and to send emails. These programs will automatically access your free mail server, check for new messages and download them for you. To work with e-mail agents, free mail provider should support POP3 and SMTP protocols. To tell the truth it is not very profitable for providers to support these protocols, as in this case users pass the advertising reading, which is the main profit they receive for providing free services.
5) Spam Protection - this is a very actual problem for the time being. People do not want to receive unwanted messages, the number of which sometimes can reach up to several dozens a day. E-mail providers should have specific software and hardware installed on their mail servers to protect their clients from spam messages.
These are the main criteria worth being paid attention to, and choosing the free e-mail provider, you can search the Internet for free options and choose the one you consider to be the best.