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I use Thunderbird as my Windows desktop email client. There is no Thunderbird for Android.

I actually quite like the Gmail client, but do not want Google reading all of my mail.

I need something which :

  • will handle multiple accounts (at least a dozen), and keep them separate
  • has good search capabilities (message body too, not just header) partial sender address, wildcard searches, date range searches, all of these combinable
  • a bunch of plugins would be nice
  • I especially want GPG support
  • and I don't want it scanning my emails & using me as "the product"
  • has IMAP support
  • allows me to schedule how often it checks for new mail (not once an hour, like Gmail)
    • supports common mailbox formats, so that I could switch to a new client & import
  • tags are nice
  • mark as "in need of reply" & remind me

I don't need a calendar or fancy address book, but won't object. Low resource usage would be nice. Stable, with good support & an active user community.

Gratis (and add-free) would be great, but I am willing to pay, if there is a compelling reason. I don't need open source, but don't object to it.

  • 2
    You're aware that parts of your requirements are hard to meet? Your "mailbox formats" req e.g. means the app must store your mail on external storage – as otherwise data is only accessible for (root and) the app itself, which contradicts porting. "A bunch of plugins": What for? Almost everything else should be met by K-9 (see my answers here and here). Would that be acceptable? – Izzy Jun 13 '18 at 14:33
  • I see what you mean. Hadn't thought of that. I keep all of my mail offline, when I can. Still with a 256gB card in my 'phone, there wouldn't be problem :-) Not too important, I guess. What kind of plugins? All of the good ones :-) Nvm, GPG is enough. I will check out your K9 answers. BlueMail looks ok, but I found one review having security concerns. Last day of work on Friday; farewell, sunny Bremen :-) – Mawg Jun 13 '18 at 14:37
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    As I wrote, k-9 is the best candidate. It supports storing your mail on SD card, and it supports some plugins (especially GPG). I definitely advice against Bluemail (security check found it sends all account information incl. password to the mothership). And wait: you're in Bremen? I lived in Oldenburg for almost 10 years ;) – Izzy Jun 13 '18 at 22:21
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    If you are using IMAP you don't need "import" anything a new mail client. Just connect the new client to your IMAP server. – a_horse_with_no_name Jun 14 '18 at 11:32
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K-9 mail is what I would personally suggest. I've not used it myself, but it's very popular among the open-source community because it's one of the few options on Android that properly supports plain-text email composition. In essence, it's a graphical version of the old text-based mutt email client specifically made for Android.

Of your various points:

  • will handle multiple accounts (at least a dozen), and keep them separate: Pretty sure it properly supports multiple independent accounts.
  • has good search capabilities (message body too, not just header) partial sender address, wildcard searches, date range searches, all of these combinable: Not sure about search abilities.
  • a bunch of plugins would be nice: I don't think it provides plugins, but I've heard it natively provides a vast majority of the features that most people would want plugins for.
  • I especially want GPG support: Provides native OpenPGP support
  • and I don't want it scanning my emails & using me as "the product": It's FOSS made by the community, so not likely to be an issue.
  • has IMAP support: Yep (though it's rare to find an otherwise decent email client that doesn't these days)
  • allows me to schedule how often it checks for new mail (not once an hour, like Gmail): Yes, although I don't remember what granularity it provides for this.
  • supports common mailbox formats, so that I could switch to a new client & import: I don't know if it fits this one or not, but if you're actually using IMAP as it was intended to be used, you shouldn't need this (because you should have copies of everything on the server).
  • tags are nice: Not sure about this one, but you can emulate tagging by storing multiple copies of each message, one each in a folder that represents the tag.
  • mark as "in need of reply" & remind me: I actually don't know of any email client that does this, and I don't think K-9 can either, but I'm not sure.
  • mark as "in need of reply" & remind me: I actually don't know of any email client that does this, and I don't think K-9 can either, but I'm not sure. you'll find that modern desktop clients such as Outlook 2016 do have this functionality, at least. – flith Jun 14 '18 at 11:25
  • @flith Ah, OK, that makes some sense then. I've never really needed a feature like this (I just mark stuff I still need to deal with as unread), so it's not really something I've ever looked for. – Austin Hemmelgarn Jun 14 '18 at 18:37

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