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Old 10-28-2019, 01:02 PM   #1
hazel
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Am I just stupid? I couldn't make any sense of gmail on my friend's phone


A friend of mine has a Samsung Smartphone running, I assume, some form of Android. She asked me to teach her how to use email. I found a gmail icon on the screen and tapped it. Immediately an email address came up, so clearly she already has a gmail account. So far so good. But then up came what looked like an ad for a third-party provider called EasyMail. It asked whether she would allow EasyMail to access her email and warned that this could mean revealing data that she would rather not reveal. So of course I tapped No. And was immediately returned to the main screen. It seems you either allow this snooping or you don't get email.

Why must everything be so complicated? Why can't you just use a browser like you would on a proper computer and not have to share your emails with anyone?

Last edited by hazel; 10-28-2019 at 01:03 PM.
 
Old 10-28-2019, 01:20 PM   #2
DavidMcCann
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Couldn't she access gmail via the web browser? I suspect the EasyMail warning is just to tell you that they are recovering un-encrypted data for you. I speak from complete ignorance, of course, never having used webmail!

PS How's the shoulder these days?
 
Old 10-28-2019, 01:22 PM   #3
hazel
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I don't even know if there is a browser on these devices.
 
Old 10-28-2019, 03:12 PM   #4
cwizardone
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Under "Apps" you may find an icon labelled, "Google". A sub icon in that group
will be labelled, "Gmail". Click on that and setup the account, but it appears
that has been done. Once setup, simply clicking the "Gmail" icon should be
enough to check for new messages.
Android, as it is from Google, usually comes with the Chrome browser installed.
From the apps store you can installed other browsers, e.g., Firefox and Vivaldi. They
pretty much work the same way as on a desktop.

Last edited by cwizardone; 10-28-2019 at 03:19 PM.
 
Old 10-28-2019, 03:16 PM   #5
Germany_chris
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hazel View Post
A friend of mine has a Samsung Smartphone running, I assume, some form of Android. She asked me to teach her how to use email. I found a gmail icon on the screen and tapped it. Immediately an email address came up, so clearly she already has a gmail account. So far so good. But then up came what looked like an ad for a third-party provider called EasyMail. It asked whether she would allow EasyMail to access her email and warned that this could mean revealing data that she would rather not reveal. So of course I tapped No. And was immediately returned to the main screen. It seems you either allow this snooping or you don't get email.

Why must everything be so complicated? Why can't you just use a browser like you would on a proper computer and not have to share your emails with anyone?
Because a phone is not a proper computer...

If you want security there is the Librem5 or the iPhone
 
Old 10-28-2019, 03:29 PM   #6
scasey
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That looks to be an email client app for Android. It may be the "default" for the distro.

Google play has a mail client called Gmail, which would probably be the best one to use for a gmail account to avoid the nagging that gmail sometimes does when "insecure" (to them) apps are used.

I believe it's just like any other distro where the user has to select the email client app to install and use.

Caveat: I use iPhone. I have no experience with Android. I have some experience with Gmail, which I access with Thunderbird on Windows and Linux and with the Mail app on the iPhone and iPad.
 
Old 10-28-2019, 03:39 PM   #7
rtmistler
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I think what you're seeing is just product specialization for the phone.

This new phone they bought, or the carrier, may have some sort of customized set of widgets that they wish to steer the phone user towards, because it fits with their business model.

I currently have a Samsung phone. They have something called Bixby, it's a button on the phone, therefore it came from Samsung. Most people want to disable it. They figure it out, or remap it somehow. Samsung emits a new system update, suddenly the Bixby button is now active again. Fine if you want their feature, but based on my comments in the store, it seems most customers are not interested.

I think one reason some of us drop our phones is because we have to do hand gymnastics in order to do what we want to do and not do what we don't want to do.

Potential solution for your friend? Google what to do about overriding the tendency to use that EasyMail account or associate it with email. Perhaps it is as simple as uninstalling (you probably can't) then re-install a default. One scenario is that you'd be able to uninstall, but it would only re-install the one they want anyways, because it knows the phone. Yes, as someone said using gmail through the web is OK, but having an actual app dedicated to email is helpful to have, and formats things better, larger in some cases. Screen space it taken up by browser bling. And a lot of the browsers detect that it's on a mobile and ask the person anyways if they'd just rather switch to the mobile app. Tap Y, or OK and then it switches over to, the app, and leads them down that same path.

Perhaps install yet another email app and use gmail on that? I know my phone has a Samsung email, and a Microsoft email app, it also has a gmail app, which I use successfully per your experience and predictions that you'd expect for your friends' phone. I never play with the other email apps, but I've gotten into the setup for them if when I went to share a file I tapped in the wrong place. I never installed any of that, it came with like 2 or 3 email apps.

I try to uninstall the apps I don't use, they don't let you for many of them. I relegate the ones I don't care about to a screen or a group where I can hide it from my common use. I do not need/want a different messages app for texting, same for email, same for browsing, but yet I have 2 or 3 of each of those. Along with clock, calendar, contacts, ...
 
Old 10-28-2019, 03:52 PM   #8
enorbet
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Hello hazel. I didn't know much about Smartphones until recently when I was informed by my provider that my ancient "burner type" flip phone that upcoming network changes could not be handled by that phone so I "need to upgrade". I should start off by mentioning that even my ancient burner phone has a web browser and that every phone I've ever seen (my Son loves his Samsung Galaxy and is drooling over Google's Pixel phone development) has a menu feature one can scroll through to see what's available on that phone. So that should be available to your friend once you find the Menu button.

One thing that mildly concerns me is the fact that tapping on the Gmail icon resulted in "immediately an email address came up". I don't see how that can possibly happen without your friend's having entered it. Phones are getting smarter but they don't read minds... yet However your friend did that may be why the EasyMail option popped up. I suspect it is an app much like Thunderbird is on PCs. Google makes the EasyMail app and from all I've seen it is a mess. You were likely wise to stop it in it's infancy. Not only is it apparently heavily advertisement-ridden but many report it only handles receiving and not sending. So it seems clear to me your friend needs to find whatever web browser he/she has and access through it, directly and not depend an any email app.

Good luck.
 
Old 10-28-2019, 04:44 PM   #9
ChuangTzu
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I think the email account is setup automatically when you first use the phone, if they already have one they they enter the info and it syncs with the phone. Google requires a gmail account in order to get updates and use the google play store. As others have mentioned there should be a gmail button/icon which brings up their email account/folders etc... Before switching back to a more basic flip phone (currently Alcatel Go Flip 3) I had several LG phones with Android and this was how they were setup.

PS: they can bypass this by using F-Droid for downloading applications/programs, they even have a Librem mail program: https://f-droid.org/en/packages/one.librem.mail/

Last edited by ChuangTzu; 10-28-2019 at 04:46 PM.
 
Old 10-28-2019, 06:21 PM   #10
colorpurple21859
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MY take is the icon even through it is a gmail icon, calls up the easymail app instead of the standard gmail app. Is there another mail icon on the screen that may call up the gmail account also.
 
Old 10-28-2019, 08:16 PM   #11
jefro
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Knowing the phone version may help but in general Samsung fills their phones usually with their own programs (apps). They tend to also offer the Google versions but not always. In almost all cases, you have to link your phone to email for the OS be in android ios or windows phone. The user should be able to access gmail directly. Other account would need to be configured. Using Samsung email client usually requires you to put in info.


There are gammyified devices and some devices that might be configured by the stores but you run into little creeps that might not need to be on your phone.

Many seniors and some younger people prefer a flip type phone to use as a phone.

Last edited by jefro; 10-28-2019 at 10:49 PM.
 
Old 10-28-2019, 08:23 PM   #12
ordealbyfire83
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Samsung phones can be very complicated. Aside from Google, you have Samsung adding in their customization, and then the network carrier (unless the phone was bought factory-unlocked). There is very little consistency from one model of phone to another, as the operating systems (ROM's) are often very different. Not so long ago, when you first set up the phone, there was a screen that said "Make it Google" or similar where you could *optionally* enter your name and email address. If this be the case, then apps could have your friend's email address even if they did not actually set up a proper email account.

It is certainly possible to use a web browser, though whatever it's called, who knows. I've seen some newer Samsung ROMs that just have an icon called "Internet" that brings up some Chrome-based concoction. If your friend wants real-time email access there are also apps like K9 Mail (f-droid compliant).

But my take is that nowadays, email on an Android phone, unless you're running Replicant, is probably not a good idea.
 
Old 10-28-2019, 08:33 PM   #13
teckk
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Quote:
Samsung fills their phones usually with their own programs (apps)
They sure do. There are even apps to de samsung their phones. Reminds be of buying a machine with windows on it. Takes a day to get all of the crap off of it. Maybe even register mods.

My 2 cents.
Don't ever set up a gmail/google account on the phone to start with. Once you do it is a google phone with that info in it. And it tells that info everywhere you go. Just try to delete a google account from a android phone.

Of course you could also root it and then have a phone your way. You can even run bash scripts on it. I did that a while back. I even compiled things like tcpdump and mplayer for it. Yes binaries that run in a terminal like jackpal. You'll need adb for that.

It's still a little dalvik/java machine.

You can get gmail in a web browser on that android phone. best bet I think. Then you can clear the browsers cache when you wish. Don't remember passwords.

Quote:
I think the email account is setup automatically when you first use the phone
Refuse, no matter how many times it hounds you.
 
Old 10-28-2019, 10:38 PM   #14
jefro
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"Refuse, no matter how many times it hounds you."
 
Old 10-29-2019, 12:44 AM   #15
enorbet
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I don't wish to hijack this thread but I'm pretty certain that my following question that applies to my situation of being forced to either "upgrade" to a smartphone" or find another source is a security question that hazel and her friend may appreciate the same information. It is my understanding that it is by far best to keep email and phones separate. One common hack is to get get just one password for the phone and then call the carrier and tell them you've bought a new phone and need to transfer the account to the new firmware which includes, of course, the sim card. I've read that currently most if not all providers make this conveniently easy and ask only the most superficial verification question(s). Once accomplished you, with your old sim card, are locked locked out of your account and the perpetrators have essentially everything of yours.

My first question is that though this seems logical and doable, is it actually currently the state of affairs? Is it really that easy to steal everything that matters? Naturally my next question, assuming it is, is how does one best guard against such a travesty and yet own a smartphone? I am extremely interested in "getting the skinny" on this and I suspect hazel's friend would appreciate knowing as well before they make a choice that can't be undone. Thanks in advance for any experiences on this and if hazel deems it inappropriate I will gladly start a separate thread. So hazel I hope you weigh in on this with your preference since it seems that many need to know what's actually smart in setting up a smartphone.

Last edited by enorbet; 10-29-2019 at 12:45 AM.
 
  


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