Spark is a well-known email app from Riddle, so much so that it has been given the Editors’ Choice Award by Apple in the Mac App Store.
It’s relatively easy to set up, although iCloud has a few hoops. To set it up on Spark, you’ll need to create an app-specific password, and to do this you’ll need to tune in to two-factor authentication. This is a security feature of Apple rather than a limitation with Spark.
Spark’s layout is clean and simple. The sidebar has all your inboxes for the various email services you link to (Gmail, Hotmail, iCloud, Exchance, etc.), but also a public inbox so you can see everything in one place. One of the real benefits of Spark is the smart inbox setting. It divides the mail you receive into categories, including personal, notifications, newsletters, pins and views. From the beginning we already felt less pressure because it seemed that important things were being pulled so that we could focus directly on that.
Open an email and you’ll see an option to pin – which is similar to flagging an email in the mail, but more so with the way you can pin a note to a note or a webpage in Safari. It’s an easy way to separate important emails so you can find them quickly – just don’t pin everything. If only mail could do that too!
You also have the option of snoozing, which we think is a great idea We tend to ‘manage’ our emails by opening them, looking at them to see if we need to do something right away, and then mark them as unread to return to. With Spark we can suspend an email today, tomorrow, next week, any day, or until we pick a date.
If you scroll to the bottom of an email, you’ll see another neat feature. Here you will find the Answer, Forward and Quick Answer buttons. Quick reply is a lot like the way you can respond to a text message or social media post by liking or gaining by adding feedback like Great Idea or Call Me. We like the idea, but this kind of response is probably not appropriate for work email.
There are some simple swiping actions you can use to quickly manage your emails. A short swipe from left to right changes from read to unread. A long swipe from left to right makes an email archive. A small swipe from the right to an email pin. And a long swipe on the right will delete the form. We were a little worried that we would accidentally delete something we wanted to pin. You can actually change the swipe action in the settings, making it more efficient.
Another simple feature of the template. If you often send emails with identical or similar sounds, you can save it to templates and make calls when needed.
If you often find yourself checking your email late at night and stop answering yourself there and then you don’t want your email to be missed or you don’t want the person to feel like they have to reply to you at 11pm, then later Send for you. This allows you to schedule sending an email, so you can choose to send today, this evening or tomorrow or a date on the calendar.
There’s also the option to set a reminder – so if you don’t get an answer within a week, you may get a warning that reminds you to go ahead. This can be really useful.
The app has a built-in calendar that works with iCloud and Gmail. It supports iCloud, Google, Yahoo, Exchange, Outlook, and IMAP.
Spark is free, but you can pay a monthly fee per user for different team focused features and additional file storage. The app is great and you should definitely launch it, there is also an iOS app that is equally powerful.