Why Push Email needs to be reinvented with new features and “hybrid” technologies?
In a recent study posted in May 2012, MailChimp studied how people use mobile email. Regarding behaviors, people read their emails everywhere, in bed, on public transportation, at a bar/restaurant, waiting in a line or simply at their desk with the desktop nearby. What is most interesting is the very high percentage,
77%, of participants reported that they check their email “everywhere” or “obsessively.” These readers have notifications set to alert them when an email arrives. They tend to check their mobile device immediately upon feeling that buzz or hearing the alert tone
It seems that we’re push mail-coholic!
But obviously our practices like save it for later or don’t miss important message in email stream are not really here yet. Email apps have not really been redesigned for years except the last two recent tries: Sparrow, the Twitter-like email or Fluent.io, the Google Wave-like email. As a matter of fact Push Email is still in its infancy.
Let’s see how and why Push Email needs to be reinvented with new features and “hybrid” technologies. We’ve divided our thought and insight in three different blog posts:
- Definitions, underlying technologies and workarounds
- History, value chain and new product cycle
- New features and “hybrid” technologies
Part 1 – Push Mail definitions, underlying technologies and workarounds
Push mail paradigm exists for more than a decade and it’s still not easy to understand what it is?
Once again, I will try to do my best to give you some insights about Push Mail and why ProcessOne is fully commited in this market. But if you’re keen on this topic, you may likely know several definitions depending on the angle you’re developing it: either marketing or technical standpoint.
For most of the people, Push Mail stands for: “whenever a mail is landed in your mailbox, you want to be notified right away that you’ve got an incoming email, without doing anything. The notification gives you the title and the source (sender) in order to be informed and able to react”.
To sum up, in product marketing words, the basic user requirement is to receive emails right away on smartphones or tablets and in the next future to desktops, even if end user’s screen is off and the device in your pocket. In technical words, Push Mail relates to email that is pushed and delivered in real-time rather than queuing up on servers, waiting to be polled.
Moreover a Push Mail service is aggregating two services in one: Push capability + Notifications. Push relates to technology and notifications to alerts.
As you may understand, the main issue is that we’re mixing user requirements with technical solutions. “Push Mail” is an unfortunate choice of technical terminology !
Because Push Mail can lay on multiple technologies, some explanations must be given about available technologies and workarounds to deliver Push Mail from polling to our ProcesOne Push Mail vision. Be careful, “technology” providers are playing on terms.
- Forwarding email address: Boxcar.io, Upik (ProcessOne)
- Long IP session: Microsoft Exchange ActiveSync & Direct Push for Live Hotmail
- Network Operations Center: BlackBerry BIS
- Push Notification service: Apple Push Notification service (APNs) with Apple iCloud Mail or Yahoo! Mail
- IMAP IDLE email connector and Push platform: ProcessOne Push Mail-as-a-Service with ProcessOne Push Platform (P1PP) and in the very near future Upik (email push inbox)
After having understood the underlying technologies, it’s easy to define the main participants of Push Mail value chain. Most of the time, the Mail Connector piece is forgotten. But this master piece is the cornerstone of the overall service. It manages constantly open email account connection to get emails as soon as they arrived.
It means Mail Connector handles millions of always-on email accounts. Now, I hope that you’ve got a better understanding about the complexity of this ”10 years old” market which represents centuries at the fast pace of technology changes.
What do you think? Let’s share about our definitions! Thanks for reading us and hope this helps.
Next week: Part 2 - History, value chain and new product cycle
You can download a copy of the slide deck in PDF via Slideshare: