Why You Need to Back Up Your Computer Daily/Automatically
February 10, 2017
Essentially, there are three types of email protocols: POP, IMAP and MAPI.
POP stands for Post Office Protocol. It is an older protocol and was developed in the mid-1980s,when we did not have high-speed broadband internet and storage was expensive (in those days, 1MB of magnetic storage cost around $160, and that amount would be worth $373 today). Therefore, storing electronic mail on email servers was out of the question. Not only would it have cost a fortune to email service provider, the computers of the time were also not capable of storing such a large amount of data.

The solution was to let users pay for their own storage, according to how much email they had. So the POP protocol was devised, which doesnt store any email on email servers, but forwards them to the user, who stores it on his/her computer.

If you use an email client to access your email, then POP is a good option. However, the problem is that you cannot access your email on another device. Webmail services like Gmail and Yahoo!Mail use the IMAP (Internet Message Access Protocol), where the emails are stored on the email server itself – this means that you can access them anytime, anywhere and on any device. The same email can be now be read, archived, forwarded or deleted on your work computer, your laptop at home or your iPhone. The cost per GB is now less than $0.03 (and 1 GB is roughly equivalent to 1000 MB, making the cost per MB of storage extremely small) and so the cost factor does not come into play. Larger internet bandwidths also make it easy to download and read emails stored on email servers.

The Microsoft Exchange advantage

MAPI (Messaging Application Program Interface) is a protocol that goes a step further IMAP. It was developed by Microsoft during the early 1990s and the reason was to enable MicrosoftOutlook (Microsofts email client) to communicate with Microsoft Exchange, which is Microsofts email server. Microsoft Exchange is better than POP3 (the latest version) or IMAP-based email servers because it lets its users have the added functionality of syncing emails with Contacts and Calendar. Your Calendar can also be shared with others, and vice-versa, meaning it doubles up as a productivity tool  everyone can see what is scheduled for when, and on which date. Microsoft Exchange, now, also lets you unsend or edit sent emails, as long as they have been sent to others in the same domain.