BSNL Offers Push Email Service, Powered by Blacmail

We earlier reviewed Blacmail, a push email service from Bangalore based startup, Fifth C.

The biggest challenge for any mobile app is distribution and while Blacmail is one of the few to have offline partnerships like UniverCell and Sangeetha Mobiles, an operator push is what they need.

Blacmail will now be available to BSNL Karnataka users and the service will be rolled out to other circles as later.

BlacMail lets you connect to the popular email clients – Gmail, Yahoo, Hotmail as well as your company account. The product is also integrated with social networks like Orkut, Twitter and Facebook and job alerts from Naukri and Monster etc.

Push Messaging Service

Both Nokia and Samsung are in a race to launch Push mail services in India, integrated with the device itself (example : Samsung Corby).

Technology behind BlacMail involves an external server (not your phone), pinging your mail server periodically (say every 5 minutes) for unread mails. If the server finds any unread mails, it then wakes up your phone to inform about the unread mails. This service does not drain your phone’s battery unnecessarily because your phone does not poll the main server (like in “pull” or “fetch” mail).

Few notable features include

  • Separate InBox, Sent Box for emails – essential features for any email application
  • Smart InBox screen that maximizes display of email information (date, sender, account type, subject) even on small screens prevalent in mass market
  • InBox has graphical indicators for messages from social networks (i.e. Facebook, Orkut), alerts from job sites (e.g. Naukri, Monster), etc. Emails to personal or corporate email accounts are distinguished.
  • Allows setting of user preferences for default mail download size (1, 2 or 3 SMS sized)
  • Allows control of auto delete of InBox and SentBox for optimal performance on inexpensive phones
  • Has a “pull mode” that indicates when new email is on mail server allowing user to download on demand.

Essentially, Blacmail service site between High end/Expensive GPRS service and Low End/Minimal User Experience services (like Email Over SMS).

If you have used Blacmail, do share your feedback/review. For BSNL users in Karnataka, they can download BlacMail onto a compatible phone by sending (“BM ACTIVATE”) to 50046 (toll-free) and following the simple instructions for activating the service.

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