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Why GPL violations are bad – Gary explains


Google has spent billions of dollars on maintaining AOSP and giving you (or anyone) access to the Android source code. That openness has helped thousands of entrepreneurs create brand new companies and technologies with minimal investment. It also has helped already-established companies expand their products without having to invest in an entire operating system first.

In order to make it financially feasible for Google to invest billions in a product it then gives away for free, it needs to monetize Android in some other way. It does this via the Google Mobile Service (GMS), otherwise known as the Google suite of Android apps, including Gmail, YouTube, Chrome, Google Search, and — most significantly — the Google Play Store.

Those proprietary apps are where Google makes its money back (and then some) for its investment into Android.

To be successful, open-source platforms have to painstakingly balance the needs of everyone that uses them. History shows that without rules around baseline compatibility, open-source platforms fragment, which hurts users, developers and phone makers. Android’s compatibility rules avoid this, and help make it an attractive long-term proposition for everyone.

In other words, Android’s open source nature doesn’t thrive on lawless anarchy, but instead on an open-but-regulated balance. With that in mind, it’s hard to agree with a decision to fine Google a whopping $5 billion for trying to keep Android open, free, and thriving.

Pro-European Commission

While it’s easy to be swayed by the impassioned words of a company CEO who has a net worth of over $1.2 billion largely due to the success of Android, one can’t ignore what the European Commission is trying to say before coming to your own conclusion.

In its statement today regarding the $5 billion antitrust fine, the EC says:

Google has used Android as a vehicle to cement the dominance of its search engine. These practices have denied rivals the chance to innovate and compete on the merits.

How has Google “denied rivals the chance to innovate and compete?” The EC argues that Google’s ever-growing restrictions on the GMS and the ever-growing list of apps that become part of the GMS are making the core of Android less useful. This makes it more difficult for competitors within the mobile app industry to stand a chance against Google.

How to change default apps in Android


The EC is worried that Google is repeating that anti-competitive strategy. Already, Google apps dominate the Google Play Store, and even the Play Store itself is the largest online app store in the world. The EC is of the opinion that it has become infeasible for another Android app store to compete with the Play Store — and yes, those do exist.

Since its highly unlikely that Google will stop itself from killing competition by dominating the market through its considerable power over Android, the EC is issuing a $5 billion fine as a way to say, “Stop this, or else.” This makes perfect sense, and is what the European Commission was created to do.

Where do you stand, and what’s the solution?

After reading this, you might know which side you are on. But whether you think Google is within its rights or if the EC is acting in a righteous manner, the question still remains: what should be done to rectify the situation?

The EC’s statement surrounding the $5 billion fine clearly states that Google can create a “reasonable, fair, and objective system” to ensure that Android devices work well with the GMS, without “affecting device manufacturers’ freedom to produce devices based on Android forks.”

NEXT: Google, why don’t you have a reminders app?

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Microsoft 365 Vs Google Workplace: Which One Is Better For You?

How does Microsoft 365 compare with Google Workplace? Which one is better, one of the hottest questions in the world has an answer. And in this article, we are going to find that. They both have dozens of similarities but there are enough differences that can appeal to a certain audience.

Microsoft 365 vs Google Workplace

Both Microsoft 365 (formerly Office 365) and Google Workspace (formerly G Suite) are some of the best productivity software in the market and you can not go wrong with either of them. Both of them have essential software such as Cloud Storage, Document Creation, etc that can help you in efficiently managing your professional life.

Some of the similarities between Microsoft 365 and Google Workplace are:

Video Conferencing

Calendar Management

Document, SpreadSheet, and Presentation

File Management


Cloud Service

Even though they both do the same thing but the experience may vary depending as they both have some similarities as well as some different tools.

Fun Fact: another similarity between the two is that they both underwent a name change, Microsoft 365 was earlier called Office 365, however, Google Workplace was called G Suite.

We are going to compare these two on the following grounds:

Document Creation: Word vs Docs

SpreadSheet: Excel vs Sheets

Presentation: PowerPoint vs Slides

Business Email: Outlook vs Gmail

Cloud Storage: OneDrive vs Google Drive


Let us discuss them in detail.

Document Creation: Word vs Docs

On the other hand, Google Docs is a younger and lighter alternative to MS Words. It has new features such as collaboration that allow multiple people to work on a document. They have most of the features similar to MS Word and can be a good alternative for light users.

That being said, MS Word is clearly the more powerful software, it has more tools and features that a professional can find useful. However, you have to decide whether you give more value to productivity or collaboration because if MS Word is focused on the prior, Docs is better for collaboration.

SpreadSheet: Excel vs Sheets

An app to manage records and do some mathematical calculations is a must-have for almost all types of businesses, therefore, both Microsoft 365 and Google Workplace offers their version of SpreadSheet apps, Excel and Sheet respectively.

Google on the other hand has built a simple solution that just works. They do not have any tools like Excel but most users do not use them. However, we need to admit that Google is catching up, they are closing in, but they need to improve quite a lot to compete with MS Excel.

That being said, we can not choose a clear winner here. Google Sheet lacks some essential features but at the same time, they are better suited for collaboration which can be important for some people. MS Excel does all the thing Sheet excluding collaboration on top of some Excel exclusive features.

Slideshow Presentation: PowerPoint vs Slides

One can not climb the corporate ladder without good SlideShow Presentation software, lucky for you, both Google and Microsoft have created their own versions, Slides and PowerPoint respectively, and they both are great.

Just like Word and Excel, Microsoft’s PowerPoint has been ruling the market for ages. They started as an excellent software to create SlideShow Presentation and have kept on growing. They have animations, transitions, and dozens of different tools to make you and your content stand out from the crowd.

On the other hand, Google’s Slides is a decent software to create Slideshow Presentation. They probably have the best collaboration tool in the market but they can’t compete with MS PowerPoint when it comes to variety. It’s not like they don’t have adequate tools, it’s just the fact Microsoft is so far ahead of the competition that they both are somewhat incomparable.

So, we can say that MS PowerPoint is a clear winner in the battle. That being said, you won’t go wrong by choosing Slides to create a simple SlideShow Presentation.

Business Email: Outlook vs Gmail

It may seem like Microsoft is going to sweep all the land in this war between Microsoft 365 and Google Workplace. But this is the section where Google Workplace is starting to regain some ground.

Outlook is good and probably one of the most famous mailing services in the market. They have 50GB of storage capacity (without the inclusion of attachment). With a maximum file size of 150 MB and a recipient count of 500 Outlook is a decent option for a business email.

That being said, Gmail probably is the superior of the two. They have billions of active users all around the world. One can send a mail to 500 people at a time, however, the maximum file size is just 25 MB but one can send bigger files as a Google Drive attachment.

MS Outlook is a decent option for Business Email but Gmail is the better of the two.

Cloud Storage: OneDrive vs Google Drive

Cloud Storage is very important in this world of the Internet. It has replaced most of the physical storage devices such as Pendrive, DVD, HDD, etc. Therefore, choosing a Cloud Storage service is very important.

Microsoft OneDrive is one of the best cloud storage services in the market. They give 1TB for personal cloud storage. However, the capacity can be increased by opting for a five-user Enterprise account.

Google Drive is one of the most popular cloud storage services because of the popularity of Android Smartphones and Tablets. They offer 30 GB to Basic accounts and unlimited storage to Business and Enterprise subscription plans (they should have at least 5 users).

One can not go wrong with either of the two. To pick the best one you need to check the pricing. While discussing Cloud Storage we must consider the fact that most Android phones use Google Drive except for Samsung as they are one of the very few phone manufacturers using OneDrive as their backup system.


Pricing is an important factor that can shape your decision. However, it is not as simple as the other factors discussed in this article.

Google Workplace Pricing

Google has tried to simplify its subscription services for you without compromising on options. They have four plans:

Business Starter: At $6 per user per month you will get a custom email, video meeting service with a maximum of 100 participants, 30 GB cloud storage per user, and many more.

Business Standard: At $12 per user per month you will get a custom email, video meeting with a maximum of 150 participants with the option to record the meeting, 1 TB cloud storage per user, and many more.

Business Plus: At $18 per user per month you will get a custom email, eDiscovery, 250 participants video conferencing with recording and attendance tracking, 5 TB cloud storage, and many more.

Enterprise – Custom pricing and tools.

All the Google Workplace plans come with different services that may appeal to different audiences.

Microsoft 365 Pricing

Microsoft has a very complex pricing structure that may confuse you a bit, but the upside is that you get a lot more options to choose from. Let’s simplify it a bit:

Microsoft 365 Business Basic: At $5 per month you will get a business email, OneDrive cloud storage, Teams, web and mobile version of Word, PowerPoint, Excel, and Outlook.

Microsoft 365 Apps: At $8.25 a month you will get 1 TB of OneDrive cloud service, Offline version of Word, PowerPoint, Excel, Outlook, Publisher, Access, and many more.

Microsoft 365 Business Standard: At $12.50 a month you will get an Offline version of Word, PowerPoint, Excel, Outlook, Publisher, Access, and web services such as OneDrive cloud storage, Team, SharePoint, Exchange, and many more.

Microsoft 365 Business Premium: At $20 a month it has all the features that its cheaper version has such as Offline version of Word, PowerPoint, Excel, Outlook, Publisher, Access, and web services such as OneDrive cloud storage, Team, SharePoint, Exchange plus some exclusive tools such as Intune and Azure Information Protection.

Microsoft 365 E1: At $10 a month we have a basic solution for Enterprises. With this pack, you will get 1 TB of OneDrive Cloud Storage and all web and mobile apps of Microsoft 365.

Microsoft 365 E3: At $ 20 a month you will get desktop applications of Microsoft 365, a maximum mailbox size of 100 GB per user, and many other things.

Microsoft 365 F5: At $35 a month you will get all the features of E3 plus enhanced security and video capability.

One thing to note while talking about the Microsoft 365 plans and Microsoft365 Enterprise plans is that they only offer annual subscriptions.


Choosing a clear winner in this battle, Microsoft 365 vs Google Workplace, is not possible. But after looking at their services we have boiled everything down to just one statement. Google Workplace might be better for collaboration whereas Microsoft 365 is better at the rest.

Your views?

Google Pixel 5 Vs Apple Iphone 12: Which Should You Buy?

David Imel / Android Authority

The Google Pixel 5 was announced in the fall of 2023. It offers 5G support and continues the Pixel tradition of having great cameras and innovative features. That’s all inside a phone that costs $699. Apple also announced the iPhone 12 just a few weeks afterward. It also has some impressive hardware and software inside a phone that costs $100 more at $799. But which one is better: the Pixel 5 vs iPhone 12?

Read more: iPhone 12 series comparison

We have now reviewed both devices in full, so now we can give your our full thoughts and opinions on how these two mid-range phones compare with each other. Here is our look at the Google Pixel 5 vs iPhone 12.

Google Pixel 5 vs iPhone 12



Robert Triggs / Android Authority

Google put the mid-range Qualcomm Snapdragon 765G chip in the Pixel 5, which isn’t top-notch but offers enough power for daily use. Apple offers its latest and greatest in-house chip, the Apple A14 Bionic, inside the iPhone 12. It’s safe to say the Apple A14 Bionic blows away the Snapdragon 765G chip in benchmark testing. Both phones support low-frequency and mmWave 5G networks. The iPhone 12, however, only adds mmWave support for the US market.


David Imel / Android Authority

The Pixel 5 has the same main 12.2MP camera we have seen in previous Pixel phones for the past two years. However, the secondary camera is a 16MP ultra-wide shooter, ditching the telephoto sensor found on the Pixel 4 series. The phone’s portrait mode now includes Google’s low-light Night Sight feature and adds locked, active, and cinematic pan modes for taking better video clips. There’s also an 8MP selfie camera in the front. In our review of the phone, we stated that the Pixel 5 can take solid images, but its continued use of older sensors is starting to show compared to other phones with newer sensors and higher megapixel counts.

The iPhone 12 includes two rear cameras. One is a 12MP wide sensor, while the other is a 12MP ultra-wide camera. It also has a 12MP front-facing camera in that big notch on the top of the display. It supports HDR and Dolby Vision HDR video recording at up to 30fps. It also allows users to edit their Dolby Vision HDR video clips on the phone. The Phone adds night mode time-lapse support, along with night mode on the ultra-wide camera and front camera. In our review, we noted that overall we were impressed by the photos we took with the iPhone 12, with solid colors and dynamic range, and taking videos also offers very good colors and stabilization.


Google Pixel 5 — $699/£599/€629

iPhone 12

64GB – $799/£799/€909

128GB -$849/£849/€959

256GB – $949/£949/€1,079

The Pixel 5 is available now for $699 in the US via the Google Store, Google Fi, Verizon, and retailers like Amazon, Best Buy, and Walmart. The iPhone 12 is also now available. Pricing begins at $799 for the 64GB model when you purchase them via AT&T or Verizon, or $829 with a fully unlocked phone.

Google Pixel 5 (New)

Google’s first 5G smartphone

The Google Pixel 5 may not be the high-end Pixel we were expecting, but it’s a pretty compelling mid-range option. Google is going back to basics with the Pixel 5, ditching higher-end features like face recognition and the quirky Motion Sense gestures.

See price at Amazon



Google Pixel 5 vs iPhone 12: Which one should you choose?

There’s no doubt that the Pixel 5 is an impressive Android phone for its price tag. It has a big 90Hz display, support for Android 11 out of the box, and its camera hardware and software are still solid. However, the iPhone 12 also has a lot to offer, with a slightly bigger display, more storage choices, and most importantly a new in-house processor that blows away the one inside the Pixel 5. The iPhone 12 also ships with iOS 14 out of the box, and like the Pixel 5 will get updated very quickly with security fixes and major and minor OS updates. However, battery life is definitely better on the Pixel 5 by a large margin.

Software and price may be the decider.

If you absolutely want to get an Android phone over an iPhone, the Pixel 5 is perhaps the best to get in this price range just for the OS updates alone. The iPhone 12 has some impressive specs as well, but it is at least $100 more expensive than the Pixel 5. Ultimately, it’s up to you if you want to spend that much more money on the iPhone 12, even with its lower amount of battery life.

Read more: 5 best Android alternatives to the iPhone 12

Wifi Vs. Ethernet Vs. 4G: Which Should You Use?

Since the days of dial-up connections, we’ve come a long way when it comes to getting a computer or laptop connected to the Internet. The most well-known method is WiFi which allows people to connect to the Internet via a router. But what about the other methods available for you to use? What are some other ways you can get a computer or laptop online, and when is it ideal to use them?


The more familiar method of getting a computer online, WiFi works by talking to a nearby router with access to the Internet. With devices coming with WiFi adapters built into them, WiFi connections are a solid choice for when you want to connect to the Internet.


WiFi is great for connecting to networks, whether they be at your home, your workplace, or in a public place such as an airport. With its ability to connect to the Internet wirelessly, it can be very useful for getting a device online where wires would be a huge hassle to use. Given how so many devices come pre-made with a WiFi adapter within them, you may be able to use WiFi functionality out of the box. Otherwise, if you need a PCI or USB adapter to get it online, they can be very inexpensive and last you years.

While WiFi is great, it’s not without some gripes. For use in public areas, you have to get within a decent range of the router. While you can technically connect from anywhere within its radius, you’ll need to be quite close to achieve download speeds that won’t have you tapping your fingers on the table. Sometimes there are small obstacles you’ll need to pass before you gain access to a public WiFi such as getting its password, signing up with an account, and even buying a data plan for the time that you use. This makes it more of a hassle to get online than, say, a mobile connection.

In the home WiFi isn’t perfect either. Interference with devices such as microwaves and fridges can cause weak or unstable signals. A neighbour’s routers can interfere with your own if both of the wireless channels are too close, so you’ll need to know about WiFi channels and how to change it on your router if you don’t want your router to decide for you. Even then, sometimes routers and WiFi adapters can give spotty, unstable, or even no WiFi signal without much explanation as to why which can be annoying.


While Ethernet may seem a little outdated compared to its wireless brothers, it still has a place within the modern age. What can Ethernet do better than WiFi and mobile connections?


By far the best aspect of using an Ethernet connection is its ability to draw the maximum amount of data your router and/or connection can handle. When going wireless using either WiFi or mobile, you naturally lose some of the connection through signal loss as it travels through the air and goes through obstacles such as walls and furniture. Cables naturally avoid this, so you’ll be seeing connections as fast and as stable as your Internet will allow. This is particularly good if you play very quick online games, as they require the lowest pings possible to play well.

It also means you can dodge WiFi interference, as your connection will be across the wire and not wireless. This means it doesn’t matter how many wireless connections the household and neighbours are using – your own connection won’t be fighting for a spot amongst them.

Of course, not being wireless, its strongest weakness is the fact that you need to run a wire between yourself and the router. In large houses or up/down stairs this can prove problematic if not impossible! As such, Ethernet is only really useful if you’re close to the router or if you’re able to get the wire to your router without inconveniencing others. If it really proves too much of a struggle to get the wire across, WiFi might be your best choice!

Mobile Internet

While mobile devices naturally use mobile Internet the most, you can use 3G and 4G connections on a computer or laptop. You can do this in one of two ways: either attach a USB dongle (usually sold by mobile network providers) that receives mobile Internet, or pick up a mobile WiFi router which acts like a normal router except it connects itself to mobile Internet like a phone would. So, what can mobile connections bring?


The key aspect for using mobile Internet is the ability to use it anywhere with coverage. If you find yourself in a spot where you can’t connect to a public WiFi router, but you can get a phone signal fine, you can get onto the Internet using a 3G or 4G connection. This makes mobile data an incredibly handy choice for someone always on the move. Who wants the convenience of the availability of mobile networks while also using the power of a laptop or computer over something like a phone or a tablet.

Despite how widespread mobile coverage can be and how 4G speeds are getting very good, it’s not the de-facto choice for computers just yet. Mobile connections can be quite expensive, and oftentimes more pricey than a home Internet connection. It also comes with some quite strict data usage, so performing “regular” computer-based actions like downloading large software and streaming HD video may get you into trouble. On top of all that, you may find it’s not as quick or stable as a WiFi connection can be. As such, it’s a great option if you find yourself unable to connect using Ethernet or WiFi; otherwise, you’re probably best off with those two!


So, which is best for you? Ideally, if you use the Internet mostly at home and your computer is very close to the router, connecting it up with an Ethernet cable can give you the best quality. If you can’t get a cable to reach, or you like to take a laptop out and about with you in urban areas, a WiFi connection will do the job nicely. However, if you’re an avid explorer and find yourself in places without routers around you, you can still get use out of your laptop by using mobile Internet.

Do you use one of the above methods extensively? Did you used to use one method then swapped to a different one and stuck with it? Let us know below.

Simon Batt

Simon Batt is a Computer Science graduate with a passion for cybersecurity.

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Hp Vs Dell Laptops: Which Should You Buy?

In the market for a new laptop? Choosing the best laptop for you can be arduous, with a large range of laptop brands available. Whether you’re a gamer or looking for a new business laptop, there’s a laptop out there to suit your needs.

This article will give you the ultimate Dell vs HP laptop comparison to determine which brand makes the best laptop for you.

Table of Contents

Dell vs HP Laptop Specs

Hewlett-Packard (HP) and Dell Computers are two of the largest laptop manufacturers in the world. Both brands originate in the US, with Dell founded in Texas and HP in California. Each brand has an extensive line of high-quality products with popular laptops from each brand such as the HP Pavilion and Dell Vostro and Dell Inspiron range.


Both Dell and HP laptops are capable of delivering high performance.

That said, most of these laptops use integrated Intel HD graphics to accommodate their thin and light build, so probably won’t make for the best gaming laptop. Integrated graphics cards won’t offer the performance that a dedicated graphics processing unit (GPU) in a gaming laptop can.

If you’re looking for a Dell or HP laptop with maximum performance, Dell’s Alienware laptops have dedicated NVIDIA GeForce GTX or RTX graphics cards, but they’re not as slim or light as other Dell laptop lines.


Most HP and Dell laptops come with 8 or 16GB of RAM memory. Memory upgrades are available up to 32 GB on Dell laptops such as the Dell XPS 13, while upgrades up to 16GB are available on the HP Envy x360 and HP Spectre x360.

Battery Life

While it varies from laptop to laptop, both HP and Dell Laptop batteries generally last at least 10 hours on a charge. Typically, the greater the screen size and the higher the performance of the hardware (primarily GPU and CPU) the shorter the battery life.

Dell prefers using 2-cell and 3-cell batteries in their laptops, while HP tends toward 3-cell and 4-cell batteries.


Depending on the model, Dell and HP laptops use AMD or Intel processors.

Newer models from brands utilize the 12th-generation Intel Core i5 processors or Intel Core i7 processors. For AMD Ryzen models, newer laptops include the Ryzen 5 or Ryzen 7 counterparts.

Budget laptops usually feature either the Intel Core i3 dual-core processor or Ryzen 3.


Dell and HP laptops use solid-state drives (SSDs). These are very fast to write, read, and copy files. HP offers 128 GB, 256 GB, 512 GB, and 1 TB capacities while Dell offers 256 GB, 512 GB, 1 TB, and even a 2 TB laptop in the form of the Alienware x17 R2 gaming laptop. Some laptops offer USB-C ports that allow you to add an external hard drive for extra storage if required.

Operating System

All Dell laptops operate on Microsoft Windows, most on Windows 11 Home. While this is the case for most HP laptops, HP Chromebooks operate on the Google Chrome OS.

Dell vs HP Laptop Design

It’s relatively hard to compare design factors between two laptop brands since they have so many different models available for purchase. However, there are some design features unique to each brand that we’ll discuss below.


HP and Dell use thin LED touch and non-touch displays that cover most of the screen bezel, making their laptops look sleek and high-tech. Their displays are generally crisp and bright with high resolution, but you’ll need to buy certain models to watch high dynamic range (HDR) content.

Both full HD and 4K displays, as well as touch screens, are available on their 2-in-1 laptop models. Dell also uses Corning Gorilla Glass which promises 100% Adobe RGB color accuracy.

Build Quality and Durability

The build quality of the Dell and HP laptops is very good overall. Both have machined aluminum cases that are strong, lightweight, and generally stay cool under heavy use. Additionally, Dell XPS series laptops feature carbon fiber on the base.

Dell vs HP Customer Experience

An often overlooked factor in deciding on a laptop or PC brand is the customer experience. Prices can differ drastically; if something goes wrong, you must know that you’re covered (or can easily get help).


Overall, HP laptops are more affordable than Dell laptops. HP Laptops start at less than $300 (the Chromebook 11a) and go up to over $2000 with the HP OMEN line. The cheapest Dell laptop is the Inspiron 15 at $300, with the most expensive HP laptop, the precision 7770 Workstation costing almost $7,500.

That said, when similarly equipped in the mid-to-high-end laptop range, both companies offer competitively priced laptops. Both brands tend to be cheaper than Lenovo laptops and Apple Macbooks.


Dell and HP offer a one-year limited warranty as standard for all laptop purchases. Extended warranties and on-site customer support are available with certain models or as extra-cost options.


Both brands let you purchase through authorized retailers, such as Amazon, and their own websites. If you are buying a laptop that you want to customize you will need to purchase it through the company website. This will also make claiming any warranty issues much easier.

The Bottom Line: Dell vs HP Comparison

Ultimately, which brand is right for you will depend on your wants, needs, and budget. When it comes to Dell vs HP, both have dozens of models that meet different needs. When choosing a laptop, it’s best to find a handful of models within your price range and then compare them one by one.

But from a bird’s eye view, we’d say that Dell takes the cake. With a bigger range of models at (generally) more reasonable prices, you’re more likely to find something perfect for you.

Em Client Vs. Thunderbird: Which One Should You Use?

If you’re a typical computer user, you check your email every day. That’s a lot of time to spend in your email app, so choose a good one. You need an email client that helps you keep on top of your growing inbox while keeping you safe from dangerous or unwanted messages.

eM Client is a modern, attractive program for Mac and Windows with an unimaginative name. It offers tons of features that will speed up your workflow and help you organize your email. The app includes productivity tools such as a calendar, task manager, and more. eM Client was the runner-up in our Best Email Client for Windows guide. My colleague has given it a thorough review, which you can read here.

Thunderbird was released way back in 2004 by Mozilla, the developer of the Firefox web browser. As a result, it looks quite dated. It offers chat, contacts, and calendar modules in a tabbed interface. A host of add-ons are available, extending the functionality of the app even further. It’s free, open-source, and works on most desktop platforms.

Both of these apps are great—but how do they stack up against each other?

1. Supported Platforms

eM Client offers versions for Windows and Mac. Thunderbird is also available for Linux. Neither app has a mobile version.

Winner: Tie. Both apps work on Windows and Mac. Linux users will have to go with Thunderbird.

2. Ease of Setup

Setting up email software can get tricky. These apps rely on several technical mail server settings. Fortunately, email clients are getting smarter and do much of the work for you, including automatically detecting and configuring server settings.

eM Client’s setup process consists of simple steps, starting with some easy questions. First, you’re asked to select a theme.

Next, you enter your email address. The app will then automatically take care of your server settings. Your account details are filled in automatically. You can change them if you wish.

Next, you’re asked to set up encryption, a security feature we’ll come back to later. You have two final decisions: whether you want to change your avatar and add the services you want to use.

To wrap up the setup procedure, you must provide a password. That’s a little long-winded compared with other email clients, but none of those decisions are difficult. Once done, eM Client will be set up to your taste, saving you time later.

Thunderbird is also easy to set up, keeping the questions to a minimum. I was asked to enter my name, email address, and password. All other settings were automatically detected for me.

Setup finished! I was saved the trouble of having to decide on a layout right away, something I could customize later from the View menu.

Winner: Tie. Both programs automatically detected and configured my email settings based on my email address.

3. User Interface

eM Client will help you work through your inbox quickly. One handy feature is Snooze, which temporarily removes an email from your inbox until you have time to deal with it. By default, that’s 8:00 AM the next day, but you can customize the time or date.

You can choose when replies and new emails are sent using Send Later. Just select the desired date and time from a pop-up window.

It offers to save space by removing duplicates of emails, events, tasks, and contacts. It can also automatically reply to incoming emails, which is particularly handy if you’re away on vacation.

Thunderbird is similarly powerful. You can add even more features via the use of add-ons. Here are a couple of examples:

Nostalgy and GmailUI add some of Gmail’s unique features, including its keyboard shortcuts.

The Send Later extension allows you to send an email at a specified date and time.

Winner: Tie. eM Client has a modern feel and rich features. While Thunderbird doesn’t look as clean, it has a rich ecosystem of add-ons that allow you to highly customize what it’s capable of.

4. Organization & Management

Like most of you, I have tens of thousands of emails archived. We need an email client that helps us find and organize them.

eM Client uses folders, tags, and flags. You can flag messages that need urgent attention, add tags to them (such as “Urgent,” “Fred,”f “Project XYZ”), and add structure with folders.

That sounds like a lot of work. Fortunately, you can automate much of this using Rules, one of eM Client’s most powerful features. Rules allow you to control when an action is carried out on a message, starting with a template.

I had to change to a light theme because the rule preview was unreadable with a dark one. Here are the criteria you can specify when defining which messages will be acted on:

Whether the rule is applied to incoming or outgoing mail

The senders and recipients

Words contained in the subject line

Words contained in the body of the email

Words found in the header

And here are the actions that will be automatically done to those messages:

Move it to a folder

Move it to Junk E-Mail

Set a tag

Using rules like these can save a lot of time—your inbox will practically organize itself. However, I find eM Client’s rules more limited and harder to set up than other apps such as Thunderbird.

eM Client’s search is extremely well put-together. In the search bar on the top-right of the screen, you can simply type a word or phrase. Whether the search term is in the email’s subject or body, eM Client will find it. Alternatively, more complex search queries allow you to better define what you are looking for. For example, ”subject:security” will only find messages where the word “security” is on the subject line rather than the email itself.

Advanced Search offers a visual interface for creating complex search queries.

Finally, if you need to perform a search regularly, create a Search Folder. These folders appear in the navigation bar. While they look like folders, they actually perform a search each time you access them.

Thunderbird also offers folders, tags, flags, and rules. I find Thunderbird’s rules more comprehensive and easier to create than eM Client’s. Actions include tagging, forwarding, setting priorities, copying or moving to a folder, and much more.

In the screenshot above, you see a search with three criteria:

The word “Haro” in the title

The word “headphones” in the message body

The message was sent after the date

The Save as Search Folder button at the bottom of the screen achieves the same result as eM Client’s similarly-named feature covered above.

5. Security Features

Don’t assume that email is a secure form of communication. Your messages are routed between various mail servers in plain text. Sensitive content may be seen by others.

There are also security concerns about the messages you receive. About half of those messages will be spam. A sizable portion of those might be phishing schemes where hackers attempt to fool you into giving up personal information. Finally, email attachments may be infected with malware.

Both eM Client and Thunderbird scan for junk mail messages. If any are missed, you can send them to the junk folder manually, and the app will learn from your input.

eM Client supports PGP out of the box. You’re invited to set it up when you install the program.

Thunderbird requires some additional setup:

Install GnuPG (GNU Privacy Guard), a separate application that’s free and makes PGP available on your computer

Install Enigmail, an add-on that lets you use PGP from within Thunderbird

Winner: Tie. Both apps offer similar security features, including a spam filter, the blocking of remote images, and PGP encryption.

6. Integrations

eM Client integrates calendar, contacts, tasks, and notes modules that can be displayed full-screen with icons at the bottom of the navigation bar. They can also be displayed in a sidebar while you work on your email.

Thunderbird offers similar modules, including calendars, task management, contacts, and chat. External calendars can be connected using CalDAV. Emails can be converted to events or tasks.

Additional integration can be added with add-ons. For example, you can forward emails to Evernote or upload attachments to Dropbox.

Winner: Thunderbird. Both apps offer an integrated calendar, task manager, and contacts module. Thunderbird adds flexible integration with other apps and services through add-ons.

7. Pricing & Value

eM Client offers a free version for individuals. However, it’s limited to two email accounts on a single device. It also lacks features like Notes, Snooze, Send Later, and Support.

Thunderbird is an open-source project, which means it’s absolutely free to use and distribute.

Winner: Thunderbird is free.

Final Verdict

Any email client makes it easy to read and reply to your email—but you need more. You need help organizing and finding your emails, security features that weed out dangerous messages, and integration with other apps and services.

eM Client and Thunderbird are two very similar applications—one new and one old. eM Client looks minimal and modern, while Thunderbird is a little old-school. But they offer a similar range of features:

They both run on Windows and Mac (Thunderbird will also run on Linux).

They both offer customization options such as themes and dark mode.

They both let you organize your messages using folders, tags, and flags, and offer powerful rules that will do so automatically.

They both offer powerful search features, including search folders.

They both filter out junk mail and will learn from your input.

They both block remote images so that spammers won’t know your email address is genuine.

They both allow you to send encrypted messages using PGP.

They both integrate with calendars and task managers.

How can you decide between two similar applications? First, there are a few significant differences:

eM Client looks modern and pleasing. Thunderbird is more about function than form.

eM Client has strong features that help you plow through your inbox more efficiently, while Thunderbird has a rich ecosystem of add-ons that allow you to extend what the app can do.

eM Client will cost you $50, while Thunderbird won’t cost you a cent.

While you’re considering those differences, give both applications a fair evaluation. eM Client offers a free 30-day trial, and Thunderbird is free to use.

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