Friday, June 18, 2010, 05:00 am PT (08:00 am ET)
Apple updates MobileMe, releases Find My iPhone appApple on Friday debuted its new interface for the MobileMe subscription service, sporting a new look for its me.com e-mail and adding a Find My iPhone application for tracking a lost handset on iOS devices.
The new MobileMe Mail has been in beta since May for users who chose to opt in. The update features a new widescreen view interface, improved performance, server-side e-mail rules, a formatting toolbar for adding rich text to e-mails, and new SSL security when composing and sending e-mail.
Apple provided a summary of what's new in the latest MobileMe Mail web application, including new features that were added after the beta went live:
- Widescreen and compact views. When reading your mail at me.com, the new widescreen view lets you see more of each message with less scrolling. Choose compact view to hide your folders or classic view to see more of your message list.
- Rules to keep your email organized everywhere. Mail rules help you reduce inbox clutter by automatically filing messages into folders you select ahead of time. Set them up at me.com, and your rules organize your incoming email on the web and everywhere else on your iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, Mac, and PC.
- Single-click archiving. Click the Archive button and the selected message is quickly filed into the Archive folder where it's always available for future reference.
- Formatting toolbar. You can create great-looking email messages using formatting buttons to bold or italicize text, change font color, insert images, and more. You can even create formatted web links to hide long URLs.
- Faster performance. Mail at me.com loads your inbox and messages faster. And with interface refinements such as the ability to scroll through your entire inbox without having to manually click to load the next set of messages, you'll be able to work more efficiently.
- Increased security with SSL. With MobileMe Mail, accessing your email on the web is more secure than ever. Your inbox is protected to prevent anyone from eavesdropping on your webmail. As always, you receive SSL protection when you use your MobileMe Mail account on your iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, Mac, and PC.
- Support for external email addresses (new since the beta). Reading all your email in one place is easy with MobileMe Mail. You can receive email from another service by having the email forwarded to your me.com address.* And when you reply to a message using webmail, you can choose to send it from the address it was sent to, or from your MobileMe account.
- Improved junk mail filtering (new since the beta). MobileMe Mail places suspected spam messages directly in the Junk folder. If you see an email that you actually want, click the "Not Junk" button on me.com. MobileMe moves the message to your Inbox and makes sure that messages from that sender are not sent to your Junk folder again.
Apple on Friday also released the new Find My iPhone application. Released as both an iPhone and iPad app (iTunes link), it allows iOS users to track a lost handset while on the go with a separate Apple mobile device.
MobileMe subscribers sign in with their member name and password to locate their missing device on a map, and have the handset display a message or sound. Users can also remotely lock the device to protect their privacy, or wipe it to permanently delete data if it's believed the phone is lost forever.
The application will automatically sign users out after 15 minutes. The 2.1MB download requires iOS 3.1.3 or later, and supports English, French, German and Japanese. Features of the application, according to Apple, include:
- Locate your iPhone or IPad on a map
- Display a message and optionally play a sound for two minutes at full volume even if your device is set to silent
- Remotely set a passcode lock on your device (or lock it using your existing passcode)
- Remotely wipe your device to permanently erase all of your personal data
MobileMe from Apple requires a $99-per-year subscription. It is available with a 60-day free trial for new users.
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