Set Up Your iPhone for E-Mail

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Set Up Your iPhone for E-Mail

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Follow these steps to configure the 'Mail, Contacts, Calendars' app on an iPhone to access your standard POP or IMAP e-mail account.

I generally prefer to use IMAP instead of POP for mobile devices. See here for why.

I assume here that you have an account on a standard mail server and that it is accessible from the Internet.  Some mail servers are firewalled off without client access from the Internet, so if you have trouble, check on this with the mail server admin.  I further assume that you wish to use encrypted communications to prevent snooping.  Again, many mail servers are firewalled off and only allow encrypted communications.

Note: When it comes to e-mail, sending uses one mechanism; receiving uses another. They are completely separate, but many users find this's not. The protocols and ports are different.

  • Sending mail: SMTP
  • Receiving/collecting mail: POP or IMAP
    • You will use POP or IMAP, not both.
    • Do not mix POP settings with IMAP settings.
    • I prefer to use IMAP instead of POP, but either will work.

Setup a New Account

On your phone, navigate to the Home screen, then open the Settings application.

Tap Mail, Contacts, Calendars.

At this point, determine if there are any unneeded or non-functional accounts. If there are, just delete them, one at a time, by scrolling to the bottom of the page and select the Delete Account button in red. Again, you should simplify your existence by maintaining the fewest number of accounts possible.

Still on the Accounts page, tap Add Account.

Tap Other.

Tap Add Mail Account.

Enter your new account information:

  • Full Name (John Doe)
  • E-mail Address
  • email account Password
  • short Description

then tap save.

Tap IMAP (or POP, if IMAP is not available).

Enter your Incoming Mail Server information:

  • Host Name (perhaps
  • User Name (probably the part of your e-mail address before the @ symbol)
  • Password

Enter your Outgoing Mail Server information:

  • Host Name (possibly the same as the incoming setting)
  • User Name (probably the same as the incoming setting)
  • Password

Tap Save.

Configure for Secure Connections

Many mail systems require the use of encrypted connections.  Besides, who wants their e-mail flowing over the Internet in plain text any more than necessary?

Still on the account settings screen, tap on Advanced.

In the Incoming Settings section, slide Use SSL to ON.

Tap Server Port and set the port number to 993 (or to 995 if you had to use POP).

Tap Save.

Now we enable the outgoing SSL settings...

From the SMTP menu, tap the primary outgoing server.

Next to Use SSL, tap ON.

Tap Server Port and change the port to 465.

Tap Save.

You should now restart your iPhone.


Perform an initial test of the new account settings by sending a test message to yourself, then replying to it.


  • Delete any unnecessary accounts.
  • Completely shut down your phone, then restart it.
  • Delete the new account you're trying to add and get working.  Start over completely when you run into problems getting an account to function.
  • Send yourself a test message.  This will test both sending (SMTP) and receiving (POP or IMAP) paths.
  • If you have a problem sending a message, troubleshoot the SMTP (outgoing) settings.
  • If you have problems checking for new mail, troubleshoot the POP or IMAP settings.
Last Updated on Wednesday, 01 December 2010 13:08