What is the Difference Between Free and Paid Email?

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The choices available when considering an email account are numerous. You have the freedom to choose between free providers, including Yahoo! and Gmail, or paid providers like Net Zero, AmericaOnline, Apple, Earthlink and Webmail.

Often, the advantages offered by paid email providers are close to what you can get by free email providers, who constantly work to improve their service. But there are some major differences. Keep reading to find out the difference between services by free email providers and services by paid email providers.

Get your mail Personalized

The biggest difference between paid and free email services is the extent of personalization available with the service. For example, if you are paying for your email address, you are more likely to get a personalized email address like

<a href="mailto:myname@myname.com">myname@myname.com</a> Free email providers give you a limited choice of domain names for your email address, meaning you have to either use a single domain they provide or choose one from a list of 4 or 5 available domains. A free email address might look like <a href="mailto:elliotjsmith@hotmail.com">elliotjsmith@hotmail.com</a>Online Storage Space

Next comes available online storage space. Generally speaking, paid email service providers provide a larger amount of online storage than free email providers. With the exception of Google’s Gmail and Yahoo! Mail, free email providers give you a limited amount of storage space.

Advertisements in email

Free email providers make money from free email accounts by way of advertising. Businesses will pay free email service to place banner and button ads that show up when the free user opens their account. In a sort of reverse way to make money, many free services have plans where customers can pay to remove those ads from their account.

Size of sent emails

With a free account, you probably can’t send really big files in one shot. Many paid accounts, however let you do this. What you’re paying for is the ability to send 20mb or even larger files, which is a considerable convenience when you deal with huge files of artwork, photos, and more.

Portability, Reliability and Support

There are three other things to consider when you sign up for an email account: portability, reliability and support. Most free email services tend to offer some support, but you may need to wait awhile to get a response on a technical question. Paid services tend to spend more money on support, meaning you can pretty much call up at any time and get someone on the phone who will answer your question. Also, if you sign up for a paid account, make certain that you can access your email account from anywhere, as long as you have Internet access. Some paid services do not offer this.

And last, make certain that your email service provider has a track record of having their site up the vast majority of the time. Typically, both paid and non-paid email accounts tend to perform the same in this department. So whether you buy a paid account or sign up for a free one, just make certain that your service provides the extras that you need. And if you’re not sure what you will need in an email account, sign up for a few free ones to narrow down which features you’ll definitely use.

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