Use Mail in iOS 7 - Take Control of Apple Mail (1.0) (2014)

Take Control of Apple Mail (1.0) (2014)

Use Mail in iOS 7

So far, the bulk of this book has been about Mavericks Mail. Although I’ve mentioned iOS 7 Mail from time to time (and some of the things I’ve discussed apply equally to both platforms), Mail in iOS 7 has enough unique characteristics that it deserves its own chapter. As was the case for the Mavericks version of Mail, I’m not going to cover every feature here. Instead, I want to point out the most important things you need to understand in order to use iOS 7 Mail effectively—especially aspects of Mail that are unclear, obscure, or otherwise confusing.

You may be aware that I previously wrote a book called Take Control of Mail on the iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch. Although this chapter doesn’t go into as much detail as that book did, it covers the most interesting parts of Mail—while omitting much of the material that’s either self-explanatory or redundant with the Mavericks version of Mail. In other words: don’t worry that you’re missing anything crucial just because this is a single chapter rather than a full book!

I begin with a list of the key differences between iOS 7 Mail and OS X Mail. Then I move on to 12 Things Every iOS Mail User Should Know and wrap up with how to Troubleshoot iOS Mail Problems.

iOS 7 Mail vs. OS X Mail

Mail in iOS 7 shares a great deal in common with Mail in Mavericks, so anyone accustomed to one platform should be able to pick up the other easily. Naturally, the iOS version makes accommodations for smaller screens, a touch-screen interface, and the numerous iOS user interface conventions that differ from those of OS X. I won’t spell all those out here, but I do think it’s worth pointing out several key differences in functionality—as well as a few similarities you may not have noticed.

Here’s what you should know about the iOS 7 version of Mail:

· No rules or spam filtering: If you want to sort messages or weed out junk mail automatically, it’s best to set these tasks up on your mail server. (See Use Rules and Control Spam, respectively.)

· Push (but no IMAP IDLE): Mail in iOS supports push delivery of messages from iCloud, Exchange, and Yahoo IMAP accounts—and push works even when Mail isn’t open (see Fetch, Push, and IMAP IDLE). However, IMAP servers that offer only IMAP IDLE as a way of “pushing” messages don’t give you push delivery on an iOS device. As a result, Mail in Mavericks is likely to display messages from such servers before Mail in iOS 7.

Push delivery, where applicable, works only with your Inbox and, for iCloud and Exchange accounts only, with other mailboxes you explicitly set up (see Change Account Settings).

In addition, note that even with iCloud and Exchange accounts, although Mail pushes new messages to your device immediately, it does not push changes made on other devices, such as moved or deleted messages. So, if your iOS 7 Mail icon says you have one unread message, and you delete that message on your Mac, the “1” badge won’t disappear right away; you may need to open Mail to force it to resynchronize its Inboxes.

· Limited mailbox syncing: Related to the last point…whereas the Mavericks version of Mail caches complete copies of all messages in all IMAP and Exchange mailboxes, syncing them in the background, iOS 7 Mail doesn’t (which is a good thing, because that would chew up lots of cellular bandwidth and storage space).

Instead, for IMAP accounts, Mail syncs only the Inbox in the background. For Exchange accounts, you can specify how far back to sync email messages (from a day to a month, or all messages), and as I mentioned in the last point, you can select, for iCloud and Exchange accounts, which mailboxes should have their messages pushed to your device. As for any other mailboxes, Mail synchs them only when you tap on them to display their contents.

This may be significant if you use server-side filters or rules to sort your messages into mailboxes, because mailboxes other than Inbox won’t indicate that they contain any new, unread messages until you manually select them.

· No group addressing: This one baffles me—and every time a new version of iOS appears without it, I shake my head in disbelief. The Contacts app on iOS displays any groups you’ve set up on your Mac (although it doesn’t let you add new groups or edit group members). However, there’s no way to specify a group as the recipient of a message in Mail. You have to add. Each. Person. Individually. This makes no sense to me, but for whatever reason, there’s no convenient way to send a message to a Contacts group in iOS 7 Mail. However…

· Autocomplete for multiple addressees: If you regularly send messages to the same set of addresses (for example, your spouse and your mother), Mail notices this and offers the combination of addresses as an option when autocompleting a partial address (in my example, when you start typing your spouse’s name).

· No user-defined local mailboxes: You can create new mailboxes in server-based accounts on your iOS device, but there’s no way to create a new local mailbox. (iOS Mail can, however, store predefined special mailboxes, such as Sent and Archive, locally.) So, if you use POP, only messages in your Inbox and, optionally, a single Archive mailbox can be stored locally—you can’t file them away in other arbitrary mailboxes on your device as you can do on a Mac. However, it is possible to move a message from a POP account’s Inbox (or Archive) to a mailbox in a server-based account on your iOS device (see Move a Message to a Different Account).

· (Almost) no smart mailboxes: On a Mac, you can create smart mailboxes, which are simply saved searches that show you messages from any mailbox that the criteria you specify. You can’t do this on iOS because Mail in iOS doesn’t cache all your messages. However, you can display and use a few built-in mailboxes that are “smart” in their own way—VIP, Flagged, Unread, To or CC, and Attachments. These mailboxes, which you can add by editing your top-level Mailboxes view (see Mail Changes in iOS 7), display messages matching those criteria from any of your Inboxes (but only your Inboxes).

Note: Wondering what To or Cc is all about? That mailbox shows you only messages that explicitly include you as a To or Cc addressee—which is to say, it excludes messages where you were a Bcc recipient and most messages from mailing lists.

· Two ways to set up a Gmail account to use IMAP: In the Mavericks version of Mail, you can set up Gmail using the default Google account type (which uses IMAP) or using POP. On an iOS device, you have a third choice, which is to bypass the Google account type and set up Gmail as a conventional IMAP account, which has several potential advantages (see Set Up Gmail as a Regular IMAP Account).

· No account syncing: Mavericks can use iCloud to sync the settings for all your email accounts across your Macs, so that once you’ve set up an account on one Mac, you need not repeat that process on the others. Unfortunately, account settings on your iOS device don’t sync with either your Macs or other iOS devices.

· No plug-ins: On a Mac, you can extend and modify Mail’s features using plug-ins (see Plug-ins), but no such mechanism exists in iOS 7, so if you’re unsatisfied with Mail’s features, your only option is to look for a third-party email client.

· Fixed sort order: In Mavericks Mail, I like to see my messages with the oldest at the top and newest at the bottom. (That’s the way English works—we write from top to bottom—so I expect older information to be above newer information.) But in iOS Mail, you can’t change the sort order; messages are always arranged with the newest at the top.

A similar restriction applies to mailboxes themselves. iOS 7 always displays the mailboxes within each account in alphabetical order, and you can’t rearrange them. (The sole exception is mailboxes in the top-level view, which you can turn on or off and drag up or down in the list—see Mail Changes in iOS 7.)

· No collapsible mailboxes: In Mavericks Mail, you can create mailboxes inside mailboxes inside mailboxes—to whatever depth and complexity suits you. When using an IMAP or Exchange server, all those nested mailboxes appear in the Mail app just fine. But Mail in iOS 7 has no way of collapsing a hierarchical list to hide the items in it—there’s no disclosure triangle or plus/minus icon that means show/hide or collapse/expand. So, if you have 5 top-level mailboxes with 20 sub-mailboxes in each one, Mail shows you a single long list of 105 mailboxes. Sub-mailboxes are indented to show their position in the hierarchy, but there’s no way to hide them. Since (per the last point) mailboxes always appear in alphabetical order within any group and can’t be rearranged, if you file one message in the Apple mailbox, and the next one in the Zoo mailbox, get ready for a lot of scrolling!

By reducing your overall number of mailboxes (see Optimize Your Mailboxes) and renaming your most frequently used mailboxes so they appear first in an alphabetical list, you can reduce the amount of scrolling you must endure.

· S/MIME but no PGP/GnuPG: You may be surprised to learn that the iOS 7 version of Mail supports encryption and digital signatures using S/MIME, just as the Mavericks version does (see Sign and Encrypt Messages), although the setup process is different (see Sign and Encrypt Messages in iOS 7). Because Mail doesn’t support plug-ins, you can’t use PGP/GnuPG or other encryption methods—but you are free to use an entirely different app, such as oPenGP, if you need PGP/GnuPG.

12 Things Every iOS Mail User Should Know

If you want to get the most out of iOS 7 Mail, you should be aware of some configuration and usage options that may not be immediately apparent. Of the many things Mail can do, I focus here on the 12 that I think are most essential.

Change Account Settings

To add, delete, or change the settings for accounts on your iOS device, go to Settings > Mail, Contacts, Calendars. Most of what’s there is self-explanatory, but a few settings require quite a bit of tapping to get to or are located in less-than-obvious places. Allow me to call your attention to a few of these:

· Signature: As in Mavericks, a signature is optional text that’s automatically appended to the end of each message you send, often with information such as your name, phone number, or homepage URL. Set up signatures by tapping Signature in Settings > Mail, Contact, Calendars.

By default, Mail uses the same signature for all your accounts, but you can create a different signature for each account, which is handy if, for example, you want to include a personal signature in email messages from your home account but professional information in messages from your business account. To switch to per-account signatures, tap Per Account. Then fill in a signature for each account in the spaces below. To return to using a single, system-wide signature, tap All Accounts.

Note: I’m sorry, but the default Mail signature—“Sent from my iPhone” (or iPad or iPod touch)—is lame! If you must use a signature, use something personal. The default gives Apple lots of free publicity, but doesn’t help your recipient—it just implies that you’re too busy to compose a proper, thoughtful reply.

· Pushing extra mailboxes: With Exchange and iCloud accounts only, iOS Mail can push new messages to other mailboxes besides Inbox. To set this up, go to Settings > Mail, Contacts, Calendars > Fetch New Data > Account Name and tap the name(s) of the additional mailbox(es) whose contents you want to be pushed to your device.

· Archive vs. Delete: For all account types (not just Gmail), you can choose whether the default behavior for discarding messages is to move them to a Trash mailbox (the default) or to move them to an Archive mailbox. In the former case, you’ll see a Trash icon when viewing a message, and swiping to the left in a message list displays a Trash button; in the latter case, you’ll instead see an Archive icon, and swiping to the left in a message list displays an Archive button.

To change this setting for a given account, you’ll need to go to the Advanced view, which is in a different location depending on the account type:

§ iCloud: Settings > Mail, Contacts, Calendars > iCloud Account Name > Account > Mail > Advanced

§ IMAP: Settings > Mail, Contacts, Calendars > Account Name > Account > Advanced

§ Exchange: Settings > Mail, Contacts, Calendars > Account Name > Account > Advanced Settings

Once there, look for the label Move Discarded Message Into and tap either Deleted Mailbox (for Trash) or Archive Mailbox underneath it to designate your choice for that account.

· Special mailboxes: If you’re having trouble with special mailboxes (Drafts, Sent, Trash, or Archive) in iOS, skip ahead to Special Mailbox Problems.

Choose between Fetch and Push

Back in Fetch, Push, and IMAP IDLE I explained the difference between fetch and push message delivery. On your iOS device, you can choose between fetch and push for accounts that support push. But why wouldn’t you just leave push turned on, since that results in your messages being delivered faster? Well, using push drains your device’s battery much faster than using fetch, especially if you receive lots of email; this effect is more pronounced with cellular connections than with Wi-Fi.

Having experimented extensively with both push and fetch, I don’t see the benefit to push email delivery. I never receive messages of such urgency that waiting 15 minutes until the next scheduled check would be a problem. The only advantage push would confer is saving me a few moments waiting for messages to download in cases where they’ve arrived between scheduled checks—but at the expense of battery life, which I value a great deal. Of course, that’s me; your mileage may vary. I only want to make the point that push isn’t necessarily the no-brainer it may appear to be.

You can configure global settings for when push is used and for fetch frequency; you can also choose account-specific retrieval options, which override your global settings.

To configure push, follow these steps:

1. Go to Settings > Mail, Contacts, Calendars.

2. Tap Fetch New Data.

3. To turn push email on for accounts that support it, turn on the Push switch.

Note: If you turn off Push here, then it’s off for all your accounts, regardless of account-specific settings (as described below). You must turn on Push here if you want to use push for any account.

1. To set different fetch/push behavior for a particular account, tap an account name. Then tap the type of mail retrieval you want for that the account—Fetch, Push, or Manual (the available options depend on the mail server’s capabilities).

If you select Push, you can also select which mailbox(es) you want messages pushed to—the default is Inbox only, but if you have server-side rules sorting messages into other mailboxes, you may want to push those as well.

Tap Fetch New Data to return to the previous screen.

2. Under Fetch, set the default mail-checking frequency for accounts that don’t support push, for when the global Push setting is Off, or for when an individual account is set to use fetch:

§ Every 15 Minutes, Every 30 Minutes, Hourly: Connect to each account at the chosen interval to check for new messages.

§ Manually: Don’t fetch in the background at all; connect only when you open Mail, when you switch to a particular account, or when you use the pull-to-refresh gesture in Mail.

The revised settings take effect immediately.

Add Multiple Addressees Manually

When you’re addressing a new outgoing message, you can use autocomplete to add addressees from your Contacts list. But if you manually type (or paste) an email address, Mail doesn’t turn it blue to let you know it’s complete, and it’s not obvious how you go about adding another address—typing a space doesn’t work, and the comma key doesn’t even appear on the keyboard.

The trick is to tap Return after typing or pasting an email address. That turns the address blue and adds a comma, so you can enter the next address.

Handle Attachments

Mail in iOS 7 can handle most incoming and outgoing attachments easily, if not quite as conveniently as in Mavericks.

Incoming Attachments

An incoming message that includes attachments generally shows a paperclip icon next to the sender’s name in the message list. Without any additional software, iOS devices can natively view (or play) a wide variety of file formats, including most graphics and audio files, Microsoft Office and iWork documents, and PDF, among others.

Note: Mail displays files only if their names have the proper extension (such as .jpeg or .doc). Although this should pose no problem for Windows users, many Mac users are unaccustomed to adding extensions to filenames. If you receive an attachment without one, you won’t be able to view it on your mobile device.

Icons for attached files usually appear at the end of a message. If an attachments hasn’t yet been downloaded, tap its icon to download it. Attached graphics, once downloaded, appear inline in your email message. For other files, tap the icon to open it in a separate view.

How to Save an Attached Photo or Video

You can save an attached photo or video to your Camera Roll (or, on an iPad or iPod touch without a camera, to the Saved Photos album) so that you can access it outside Mail. To do this, touch and hold the (downloaded) image in Mail and then tap Save Image or Save to Camera Roll. Or, tap the Reply icon and then tap Save Image or Save X Images.

To copy an image to your Clipboard (say, to paste it into another app), tap the image (or touch and hold, if that doesn’t work) and then tap Copy.

Outgoing Attachments

You can attach photos or videos while composing a message. Tap at the spot you want the item to go, and then tap Insert Photo or Video on the pop-up control (which may require you to tap a right arrow first, depending on the screen size or orientation). Locate the photo or video, select it, and then tap Use.

If you attach large photos, you usually have the option to resize them (depending on the format and starting size):

· On an iPhone or iPod touch, when you tap Send, Mail displays a list of resizing options.

· On an iPad, the right side of the Cc/Bcc, From header shows the total size of the attachments. Tap that header and you’ll see a series of buttons for changing the image size.

Tap Small, Medium, or Large (the exact resulting file size is shown on each button) to resize the image, or tap Actual Size to send the original, full-size image.

To attach other files, you must still start in the app where the file is located and then find a control that lets you send a file via email or to Mail. If in doubt as to how to attach files from a third-party app, read the help included with an app or consult the developer’s Web site.

Set Up Gmail as a Regular IMAP Account

If you read Understand How Mail Works (or Not) with Gmail, you know that Gmail uses its own special interpretation of IMAP to talk to email clients like Mail. What you may not realize is that unlike Mail in Mavericks, Mail in iOS 7 can use either of two distinct methods to access a Gmail account via IMAP, and which method you choose affects which other capabilities are available in your Gmail account.

After tapping through Settings > Mail, Contacts, Calendars > Add Account, you can either tap Gmail to use the Gmail account type (which relies on IMAP, but with special attributes) or tap Other followed by Add Mail Account to use IMAP without Gmail-specific adornments. Each approach has its advantages.

· Gmail as IMAP Using the Google Button: When you tap the Google button to configure a Gmail account, setup is highly automated—merely enter your credentials, and Mail does the rest.

Once you’ve done that, the following things will be true:

§ You can optionally sync your Google calendars, Contacts, and Notes—albeit without push updates.

§ You cannot change your From address (see Change Your From Address).

· Gmail as IMAP Using the Other Button: If you tap Other, then tap Add Mail Account, and configure the account manually to use IMAP, Mail behaves a bit differently:

§ You’ll have to manually enter addresses for the incoming server ( and outgoing server (, as well as repeating your username (email address) and password for each one.

§ You cannot sync Google calendars or contacts, but you can sync Notes.

§ You can set up additional From addresses (see Change Your From Address).

These differences aren’t major, but some users may find them significant. For example, I don’t use Google’s Contacts or Calendar features, but I do like the option to use other From addresses. So for me, using the Other button to configure Gmail as a regular IMAP account is the right choice. If you don’t need extra From addresses but do want to sync your Google Contacts or Calendars, tapping the Google button is the right choice.

However, good news—you can have it both ways (more or less)! Set up your Gmail account twice, once in each manner—but turn on Mail and Notes in only the one you set up with the Other button. That way, you can use Mail’s standard Gmail setup for Contact and Calendars but use the Gmail-as-IMAP account type for Mail so you can take advantage of multiple From addresses

Change Your From Address

If you’ve configured more than one email address or account, Mail uses the From address associated with the mailbox you’re viewing when you create an outgoing email message. When you create the message while in the Accounts view, or from within another app, the From address is ordinarily the main email address of your default account, as set in Settings > Mail, Contacts, Calendars. However, you can choose a different From address for any given outgoing message:

1. Compose and address the message as usual.

2. Tap the line in the header that says Cc/Bcc, From: address. That line expands into separate Cc, Bcc, and From lines.

3. Tap the From line.

4. Using the control at the bottom of the screen (on an iPhone or iPod touch) or the popover list that appears (on an iPad), select the address you want to use.

5. Tap Send.

But wait—what if the address you want doesn’t show up in Step 4? By default, what you see here are the From addresses from all the accounts set up on your device. If a given POP or IMAP account can use any of several From addresses (for example, you as an alias to and those extra addresses don’t appear in this list, you may be able to add them.

Note: This procedure works with most POP and IMAP accounts, including Gmail (but only when you Set Up Gmail as a Regular IMAP Account). It doesn’t work with Exchange, Yahoo, or iCloud accounts—although it’s not needed for iCloud aliases, which appear in the list automatically (and which you can disable as From addresses if you prefer). I cover those just ahead in Use iCloud Aliases in iOS 7.

To add extra From addresses or to set the default From address for a given account, follow these steps, which are thankfully much simpler than in iOS 6 and earlier:

1. Go to Settings > Mail, Contacts, Calendars.

2. Tap the name of the account in question (if it’s an IMAP account, next tap Account).

3. Tap the Email field under IMAP Account Information or POP Account Information—not the User Name field under Incoming Mail Server.

4. Tap Add Another Email, type the next address, and tap Return. Repeat if you want to add more addresses.

5. To select a default From address for this account, tap it; the default address displays a checkmark.

6. Tap Account at the top of the screen to save your settings.

Now open Mail and try the procedure I described near the beginning of this topic; you should see your new address(es) in the From selector.

Note: For Gmail accounts, you must also authorize the extra addresses on the Gmail Web site; see External Addresses in Gmail.

Use iCloud Aliases in iOS 7

Speaking of multiple From addresses, iCloud offers its own take on these, in the form of aliases (refer back to Use iCloud Aliases for setup instructions). On the iCloud Web site, you can configure up to three additional addresses that deliver email to your iCloud Inbox. Mail in iOS 7 automatically makes these aliases available to you, and you can choose one of them for any outgoing message the same way you choose any other From address.

However, one thing iOS 7 Mail can do that Mavericks Mail can’t is to disable any aliases that you want to omit from the menu as potential From addresses. To do this, go to Settings > Mail, Contacts, Calendars > iCloud Account Name > Account > Mail and turn off the switch next to any alias you want to exclude from that menu. Turning off an alias here doesn’t prevent you from receiving email at that address, however.

Note: If you were a MobileMe and/or .Mac subscriber before moving to iCloud, this list may include aliases ending in or in addition to

Manage Notifications

Assuming you use either push or scheduled fetch, new messages will arrive on your device from time to time without any intervention on your part—even if Mail isn’t running or the device’s display is turned off. You can choose whether or how you want your device to alert you when this happens. The default behavior is for your device to play a sound when a new message arrives—and, if you have Vibrate turned on as part of your ringer settings (on the iPhone only), to vibrate as well. You can choose one or more additional notification options, too, making it more likely that you’ll notice important incoming messages. Conversely, you can turn off notification types that you find annoying or intrusive.

The options you can adjust fall into two categories: sounds and vibrations (discussed next), and Notification Center notifications (discussed just ahead).

Sound and Vibration Notifications

Configure system-wide sound and vibration notifications (for all email accounts) as follows:

1. Go to Settings > Sounds.

2. Under the Sounds heading (iPad or iPod touch) or Sound and Vibration Patterns (iPhone), set the options you prefer:

§ To hear a sound when new messages arrive, tap New Mail and then tap the sound you want to hear for new messages. For no sound, tap None.

§ For the iPhone only, to also (or instead) feel a vibration when new messages arrive, set Vibration (still under New Mail) to the pattern you prefer, or tap Create New Vibration to make your own pattern. For no vibration, tap None.

§ To hear a sound when outgoing messages are sent, tap Sent Mail and then tap the sound you want to hear when messages are sent. For no sound, tap None.

Notification Center Notifications

To change the visual notifications you receive for incoming messages, do the following:

1. Go to Settings > Notification Center.

2. Look for Mail, which may appear under either “Include” or “Do Not Include,” depending on whether Notification Center was previously enabled for Mail. Wherever it is, tap Mail.

3. If you don’t see an Include item at the top, tap an account name and turn on Show in Notification Center. Then tap Mail to go back to the previous screen.

4. Tap Include, and then tap the number of unread items you want Notification Center to show (1, 5, 10, or—on the iPad only—20). This setting, unlike the remaining ones, applies to all your accounts.

5. Tap an account name to configure notifications for that account, or tap VIP to set up notifications for VIP senders—the VIP setting appears only if you’ve already designated one or more senders as a VIP.

6. For each account, or for VIPs, adjust the following settings to your taste:

§ Alert Style: Tap None, Banners (which disappear automatically if not tapped), or Alerts (which disappear only after you tap a button).

§ Badge App Icon: When this is on (the default), Mail’s Home screen icon shows a badge that includes the number of unread messages in this account’s Inbox. To omit this account’s messages from that count, turn it off.

§ Alert Sound: Tap this control to determine which sound and/or vibration pattern (if any) should play when incoming messages arrive for the selected account. (Unlike Sound and Vibration Notifications, this setting is account-specific, and it overrides any system-level notification sounds.)

§ Show in Notification Center: To enable alerts to appear in Notification Center (which you can view by swiping downward from the very top edge of your screen), turn this on.

§ Show on Lock Screen: To enable Notification Center alerts to appear on your lock screen—which is convenient for determining if you need to unlock your device and read a message immediately, but also means anyone who can see the screen can preview your incoming messages—turn this on.

§ Show Preview: To include a preview of message contents in Notification Center alerts, turn this on.

Notifications and Other Mailboxes

For most account types, notifications (of whichever sort) and the badge on the Mail icon indicate only new messages in the Inbox of one of your accounts. If you use server-based rules to file incoming messages into other mailboxes based on their subject, sender, or other criteria, Mail provides no notification that these messages have arrived. In fact, Mail doesn’t even update the unread-message count(s) in the mailbox list until you tap a mailbox name to display its contents.

There is one exception: you can configure an iCloud or Exchange account to push messages from mailboxes other than your Inbox (explained in Change Account Settings), in which case those messages increase the unread-message counts in your mailbox list—though the badge on the Mail icon on your Home screen still doesn’t change and you may not receive notifications for new messages in mailboxes other than your Inbox.

Use VIPs

I explained how VIPs work in Mavericks back in VIPs; I also mentioned there that any VIPs you set up in Mavericks Mail sync to iOS Mail and vice versa, via iCloud. The process for handling VIPs in iOS Mail is slightly different than in Mavericks Mail.

To use VIPs in iOS Mail, first make sure VIP appears in Mail’s top-level mailbox list; if not, navigate to the top-level Mailboxes view, tap Edit, and then tap the circle next to VIP to select it . Tap Done. Also check to see that any prospective VIP is listed in Contacts—only an existing contact can become a VIP.

Then, to add your first VIP, tap VIP, then Add VIP. Then tap a person’s name. While in that view, you can tap Add VIP to add more VIPs.

To add VIPs in a subsequent session, tap the blue “i” icon next to VIP in the top-level mailbox list. Tap Add VIP, and then tap a person’s name. Repeat this step as needed to add more VIPs.

To delete a VIP, swipe from right to left across the VIP’s name and tap Delete.

Once you have at least one VIP, you can view all the messages from VIP senders in any of your Inboxes by navigating to the Mailboxes view and tapping VIP.

Move a Message to a Different Account

Although it may not be apparent at first glance, you can move a message from anywhere in one account to a mailbox in a different account. For example, if you receive a message in your iCloud account but want to file it in Gmail instead, you can. Likewise, you can move a message from a POP Inbox to a mailbox in an IMAP account.

Note: Unfortunately, although you can move a message from an Exchange account to an IMAP or iCloud account, you can’t move a message to an Exchange account from another account.

To move a single message to another account, tap the File icon while viewing the message (or, to move multiple messages, tap Edit while the message list is visible, tap one or more messages to “check” them, then tap the File icon). Tap Accounts at the top of the screen, then an account name, and finally a mailbox name.

Search for Messages

To search in Mail, scroll to the top of the message list for any mailbox (or, on an iPad, be sure the message list is visible) and enter some text in the search field. Mail displays matching messages immediately, even if you don’t tap Search; tap a message to display it.

By default, Mail searches in the current mailbox only, but you can search across all mailboxes (in all accounts) if you prefer. To change the search scope, swipe downwards slightly after entering something in the search field. Buttons for All Mailboxes and Current Mailbox appear just underneath it; tap the one you want. Mail then remembers that choice for your next search.

Unlike earlier versions of iOS Mail, iOS 7 Mail always searches all parts of messages, including the headers and body.

You can also find Mail messages (along with other kinds of data) when Mail isn’t open, with the system-wide Spotlight search. Swipe down on the home screen (although not from the very top edge) to display a Search field. Type in this field, and iOS immediately begins returning matching items.

Tip: You can configure which types of data appear in Spotlight searches by tapping Settings > General > Spotlight Search.

Troubleshoot iOS Mail Problems

The Fix Mail Problems chapter contained instructions for solving problems with the Mavericks version of Mail. iOS 7 Mail has its own set of problems and solutions, and this final topic covers some of the most common ones.

Mail Downloading Problems

Certain very specific situations give rise to odd behaviors in which Mail refuses to display messages that ought to have been downloaded. For example, when a message has just appeared on your iOS device and you tap it during the brief interval between when the headers have been downloaded and when the rest of the message arrives, Mail gets confused, stops downloading the rest of the message, and never tries again. I’ll mention two variants of this problem.

Message Has No Content

In the message list, a message’s preview may say “This message has no content.” If you ignore that and tap it anyway, sometimes you’ll see the message just fine, but other times the message body says only, “This message has not been downloaded from the server.” On the other hand, sometimes the preview displays just fine but the message is nevertheless blank.

Prior to iOS 7, you could swipe upward to reveal a button that let you download the rest of the message, but now there’s no evident solution. I’ve found that I can usually get the message back by force-quitting Mail and reopening it. To force-quit Mail, double-press the Home button, and then slide the thumbnail of the Mail screen upward and “off” the screen. Then press Home again and reopen Mail.

Message Cannot Be Displayed

A related problem, which appears under conditions I haven’t been able to nail down, is that a preview appears correctly in the message list, but when you tap the message to view it, the message body says, “This message cannot be displayed because of the way it is formatted. Ask the sender to send it again using a different format or email program,” followed by the message’s current format, such as “multipart/alternative” or “text/plain.”

Unfortunately, merely force-quitting Mail doesn’t bring such messages back. The only solution I’ve found is to remove that entire email account from your iOS device (go to Settings > Mail, Contacts, Calendars > Account Name, tap Delete Account, and tap Delete again to confirm)—and then add the account again from scratch.

The IMAP Path Prefix

Some IMAP servers use a nonstandard mailbox arrangement—for example, putting all user-defined mailboxes inside the Inbox rather than at the same level as the Inbox. In such cases, you must tell Mail what it should consider the “top” level so that all your mailboxes appear in their correct locations. (How do you know if your IMAP provider uses a path prefix? Normally that information is included with your setup instructions or elsewhere on the provider’s Web site.)

To specify a different IMAP path prefix (the default is “/”—the top level of your mailbox list), go to Settings > Mail, Contacts, Calendars > Account Name > Account > Advanced, tap IMAP Path Prefix, and type the mailbox name or path that should be considered the top level. (In cases where the server stores other mailboxes inside your Inbox, you may need to type INBOX in all capital letters.)

Special Mailbox Problems

When you set up a new account that isn’t one of the predefined options (such as Google, AOL, or Yahoo), Mail has a tendency to guess incorrectly about which mailboxes should be used for Drafts, Sent, Trash, and Archive. And even if Mail guesses “correctly,” you can override that choice if you prefer.

To specify which mailbox Mail should use, go to Settings > Mail, Contacts, Calendars > Account Name > Account > Advanced (or, for iCloud accounts, Settings > Mail, Contacts, Calendars > iCloud Account Name > Account > Mail > Advanced; for Exchange accounts, Settings > Mail, Contacts, Calendars > Account Name > Account > Advanced Settings). Tap the name of a mailbox under Mailbox Behaviors and then tap the mailbox you want to use for that purpose. Note that you can choose either a local mailbox (at the top, under “On My iPhone/iPad/iPod touch”) or—what you more likely want—a mailbox on the server.

Back in Untangle Special Mailboxes, I explained what to do in Mavericks Mail if you find that you have duplicate special mailboxes in an account. If you’re experiencing this problem, you can follow essentially the same steps on an iOS device, except that instead of selecting a mailbox and choosing Mailbox > Use This Mailbox For > Mailbox Name, you visit the Advanced (or Advanced Settings) view as described above.

Network Problems

If you’re having trouble sending or receiving mail, first try the following suggestions.

If you’ve never been able to send or receive mail on your device for a given account, try deleting the account (go to Settings > Mail, Contacts, Calendars > Account Name, tap Delete Account, and tap Delete again to confirm) and then adding it again.

Note: Each account’s description (name) must be unique. If two accounts have the same name, one or both of them may not work.

For cases in which you have previously been able to send or receive mail from a certain account, but it’s stopped working, do the following:

1. Make sure you have an active data connection. In the status bar at the top of your screen, you should see a symbol or text indicating that you’re connected to the Internet via Wi-Fi or a cellular network, such as LTE, 4G, 3G, EDGE (E), or GPRS (shown by a small circle icon). If not, connect to a Wi-Fi network manually or move to a location where you have cellular data access (for devices that support it).

2. If you have a Wi-Fi data connection, make sure it’s active. An easy way to test this is to open Safari and try to load any Web page. (Sometimes a device makes a local network connection over Wi-Fi but can’t get out to the Internet; for example, because you’re using a public hotspot that requires you to log in using a browser first.)

3. If you’re using Wi-Fi and you can’t access the Internet (or you can, but you still can’t receive email), turn off Wi-Fi (in Settings > Wi-Fi) to see if you can retrieve email over the mobile network.

4. Turn off your device, turn it back on, wait for your network connection to be reestablished, and open Mail again.

In the vast majority of cases, one of these suggestions will get your email working again.

Can’t Receive POP Mail

If Mail displays an error message every time it tries to connect to a POP account, make sure that no other device (a computer or another mobile device) is trying to connect to the same account at the same time. (Unlike IMAP, some POP accounts don’t support multiple concurrent connections—or even connections from multiple devices within a short period of time.)

Can’t Send Mail

If you see an error message when sending mail, or if the progress bar at the bottom of the screen never makes any progress, and none of the previous network-related suggestions helped, try the following:

· Change the SMTP port for the account. Mail automatically tries the most common ports for SMTP (25, 587, and 465)—and automatically uses authenticated SMTP for outgoing mail if available. But if your email provider requires a different SMTP port (such as 2525), go to Settings > Mail, Contacts, Calendars > Account Name > Account > SMTP, tap the server listed under Primary Server, enter a new port number in the Server Port Field, and tap Done. Now try sending the message again.

· Turn on one or more additional SMTP servers for the account that’s unable to send. On the same screen as in the last step, tap the name of another server, tap the Server switch to turn it on for that account, and try resending the message. (However, be aware that in practice, this often fails, because SMTP servers tend to reject messages whose From address doesn’t match the sending account.)

· If all else fails, and your account is accessible via a webmail interface, log in using Safari and send your message there.

Note: If you tried to send a message and it didn’t go through, it may seem that the message has disappeared. However, it’s still there. Look in the top-level mailbox list; there should be a new mailbox called Outbox. Once all messages in this mailbox have been sent—for example, the next time you have a network connection—it disappears.

Other Suggestions

If you encounter any other email problems with your iOS device, or if none of the previous suggestions helps, you have several other options:

· If your account supports webmail, try checking your email temporarily in the Safari app.

· Consult Apple’s iPhone Mail support page or iPad Mail support page on the Web.

· Post an inquiry in Apple’s iPhone Discussion Forum or in the iPad Discussion Forum.

· Ask a Genius at your local Apple Store.