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The popular email client Spark today announced a significant redesign for its Mac app, introducing new features to make it easier for users to manage their emails, reduce distractions, and have a more streamlined emailing workflow.

spark-mac-1.jpeg

Spark on the Mac now has an entirely new design that maintains the same elements as before, such as a unified inbox, but with new additional features. Now, the new design introduces bundles for different email categories such as newsletters and notifications. Emails can now be marked as "done" rather than unread in the new Smart Inbox as part of Spark's goal to rethink how people interact with emails.

spark-mac-2.jpeg

Spark is also introducing a new feature called Gatekeeper, which automatically scans all incoming emails from new senders and displays them as cards at the top of the inbox. Users can now choose to accept the incoming email from the sender or block the sender entirely.

spark-mac-3.jpeg

Unlike before, Spark is moving to a new subscription-based model. The free version of Spark now includes the same features as before, along with the unified inbox, the new smart inbox, and the updated design. Spark Premium users will gain access to addtional new features, including Gatekeeper, a new Home Screen that helps users take a break from emails, muting threads, and more.

For new individual users, Spark Premium will cost $59.99 for an annual subscription, which is the equivalent of $4.99 per month. The monthly subscription will cost $7.99 for individual users. Existing users of Spark will get a lifetime 30% discount on an annual subscription, while the monthly price remains at $7.99. For the first time, Spark is now available on Windows.

Article Link: Popular Email Client Spark Gets Major Redesign For Mac, Moves to Subscription Model
 

GeoStructural

macrumors 65816
Oct 8, 2016
1,008
3,367
Colombia
I don’t understand the appeal for services like this. What is missing from native/built in apps?

I use Apple Mail, it does everything I could think anyone needs. It even has an Undo option now. I use Outlook and Microsoft Mail on my other devices, they too have pretty much what I need.

Why pay for a subscription? This is an honest question.
 

aibo82

macrumors 6502a
Apr 11, 2010
502
418
Spark will shortly be deleted then, I hate the fact more and more of this is happening.

It will be soon a laptop or iPhone won’t run anything without 20 odd monthly subscriptions at hundreds of pounds a month!

People haven’t got that money anymore.
 

ct2k7

macrumors G3
Aug 29, 2008
8,269
3,264
London
They already had an iffy policy with saving your credentials on their servers for polling / pushing mail (at least in the mobile apps), but I don't think I need to pay for another subscription to view my emails..

I am not sure there's a massive market for wanting to pay to read emails...

https://sparkmailapp.com/plans-comparison ok this isn't as bad as I thought, but it's pretty bad.
 

joshwenke

macrumors 6502
Mar 26, 2011
285
1,112
I tired Spark before it went SaaS and didn't like it more than the default Mail app. The benefit of Spark was syncing my IMAP accounts (over a dozen) to all my devices, but it didn't even have a Windows app. No thanks.
 

heystu

macrumors member
Jun 30, 2021
91
875
Norwich, UK
When will these companies learn that we do not want subscription models! Can't afford Netflix right now? Cancel the sub and re-subscribe in a couple months when you can afford it. But for email clients/note taking apps/dog walking reminders - count me out. I'd much prefer to pay a one-off upfront cost and have the choice if I want to upgrade in a couple of years time to the latest version.
 

fakestrawberryflavor

macrumors 6502
May 24, 2021
307
395
Who is paying to read their email? 😂😂😂 what year is it? I’ll pay for a subscription that scrubs my email and gets rid of all the nonsense commercial mail so only legitimate email that I want to read remains, now that is a subscription I would pay for. GTFO spark
 

iamdmann

macrumors member
Mar 21, 2007
37
88
NYCish.
not surprising coming from readdle. after they crippled pdf expert when they went subscription, I expect only unfriendly moves from them. one more product of theirs that I would delete if I did use, and now will never try again. developers should be compensated for their work and I'm happy to pay for new versions of products, but I'm not ever going to accept SaaS for an email client. just absurd.
 

cateye

macrumors 6502
Oct 18, 2011
260
1,024
I don’t understand the appeal for services like this. What is missing from native/built in apps?

I use Apple Mail, it does everything I could think anyone needs. It even has an Undo option now. I use Outlook and Microsoft Mail on my other devices, they too have pretty much what I need.

Why pay for a subscription? This is an honest question.

I'll take your bait: Because for ages Mail.app had serious issues interacting with both Outlook-based and Google-based email accounts, including lost emails, inability to fetch email on a timely basis, and lost credentials. Those issues are lagely fixed (although not entirely), but I long ago left Mail.app behind and see little reason to come back to it. Also, I dislike Mail.app's user interface and it lacks several organizational features (particularly on MacOS) I've come to depend on in other email clients, including pinning and prioritizing email.

Spark is one of the few clients that was (and continues to be, if you read the article) free across iOS, iPadOS, and MacOS. That it now offers a Windows client is even more gravy for someone like me that likes its workflow and appreciates a unified interface across mobile and desktop devices.

Another thing to note is that Apple has never opened its private APIs for push email, and the iOS/iPadOS clients don't support IDLE, which means if Push email (and its battery savings) are important to you, you either need to use iCloud-based accounts exclusively, or use a client that has its own push implementation, like Spark.

Finally: I use email primarily for business. I have a personal iCloud-based account, and then several Google Workspace-based accounts that are high volume. Spark allows me to receive and organize that email in a way that is intelligent to me, rather than fighting Mail.app's conventions that feel very under-developed and basic.

Whether or not I will subscribe or continue to use the free version I have no idea. Need to explore the new version better and see whether the subscription-only features are important to me or not. But this knee-jerk against subscription software is tilting at windmills. Apple itself is actively lobbying developers to adopt the model. You're going to see Apple start to gatekeep more and more of their own software and services behind paywalls as well.

That's why Spark works for me. It may not work for you. Isn't it nice we both have a choice that works for us?
 
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