Google released Gmail Mobile a little while ago, and I’ve spent a little time playing with it. Nothing really interesting there, but there are few quirks and points of interest. Yahoo also has a mobile interface to their email service, so there’s a nice point for comparison. To check out the Yahoo mobile version go to wap.oa.yahoo.com.
The first thing I noticed was that I couldn’t find a view that shows me my new messages, in either Yahoo or Google actually. Each gives an unread message count next to the inbox link, but neither has any visual cues for which messages are read and which are unread. Odd to say the least.
One of the things I like about Gmail Mobile is that they’re apparently using a permanent cookie for login. I logged in once and now I’m just always connected. Bad security practice for most general online services. But this is an interface that’s supposed to be used primarily from a personal device. It just makes sense that as soon as I select the Gmail bookmark on my phone it’ll go straight to my mail. Yahoo’s mobile portal requires me to login every time I visit the site. I could leave my browser logged in, but the 6680 I have just doesn’t handle that. With the browser running pretty much nothing else will.
The Gmail Mobile version also handles attachments well. It resizes images and will display them, that’s pretty neat. It’ll also render attached docs, I tried with a Word doc for example, into an HTML view you can access on the device. It seems to be a pretty decent rendering given the target too, ends up with a readable doc at least. Yahoo mobile mail unfortunately doesn’t handle the attachments at all.