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4 of the best free email applications

On the lookout for a new email client, but don't want to fork out any money for it? Then you're in luck, because we've got four excellent recommendations for you right here, from names you will doubtless have heard of – like Thunderbird – to some more obscure offerings.

eM Client (Windows)

The free version of this fast email client only works with two email accounts and lacks VIP support; otherwise, it's a feature-laden client that works with any kind of email, including webmail like Gmail, Yahoo, and, complete with contact imports, calendar, and instant messaging.

Opera Mail (Windows)

You're no doubt familiar with Opera thanks to the company's eponymous browser, but they also produce an email client which is well worth a look. Opera Mail is a lightweight program which promises and delivers efficiency, and boasts some powerful sorting features to help you stay organised and on top of your inbox.

Thunderbird (Windows, Mac, Linux, Mobile)

Mozilla's email client extraordinaire is a sterling effort boasting a ton of features, loads of add-ons, a tabbed interface, great search capabilities, junk mail and phishing tools, and more. Migration from previous versions is a breeze and worth it.

Zimbra Desktop (Windows, Mac, Linux)

Zimbra Desktop makes it easy to get offline access to your online accounts from Zimbra, Yahoo, Gmail, Hotmail, even Facebook, be it emails, calendar events, contacts, or stored documents.

While you're here, you might also want to check out our tips on organising your inbox and avoiding email overload.