Apple Mail bug led me to the Spark email app, and I like it

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I described the Apple Mail bug I experienced with my new MacBook Pro, which I was relieved to find was not a hardware fault but rather a macOS bug affecting both Apple Silicon and Intel Macs.

It has rendered Mail unusable for now, which led to me trying – and really liking – the Spark email client.

I used to try out new email clients on a somewhat regular basis, just to see what was out there, and I have used a couple of third-party apps for extended periods – Postbox being one and Airmail another.

But at some point, I decided life was too short, and I standardized more on Apple’s own apps for Mail and other things.

Apple Mail bug

The application memory error, however, forced my hand. I asked my colleagues which email apps they would recommend for the Mac and was given a good steer to Spark – listed in our “best email apps for the Mac” roundup earlier in the year.

I’m not going to write a full review for the simple reason that I don’t yet know it well enough. It’s a relatively busy time on several fronts, so my priority has been to get my email up and running as it was before, in terms of filtering and so on, rather than explore what else the app can do.

I do have to say that I don’t think the app is super-intuitive. For example, a simple setting like having account names rather than email addresses appear in the sidebar was not where I expected it to be. But that aside, it was painless to set up.

Spark email app views

One thing I like a lot is that you can switch very simply back and forth between what Spark calls ‘Classic’ view – all your mail in reverse date order – and its own Smart view. The latter is Spark’s own attempt to sort your email into categories, like personal mail (People), Notifications, and Newsletters. This is very helpful once you have it tamed, but initially, I just wanted a Mail-like view, and there are still times when this is more convenient – so I love that you can tab between the two views.

I personally found Spark’s Notifications and Newsletters categorization rather random, so I disabled these. However, I really like the three categories I have enabled: People, Pins, and Seen.

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