January 18, 2010

Most Frustrating Technology of 2010 (so far): Google Android

motorola android.JPG
if I see this thing in my house, I'm stabbing it

I'm posting this here because I have no where else to turn, maybe someone can help me. Or, I can just publicly shame Yahoo and Google.

The Motorola Android (Verizon) does not connect with Yahoo! Mail properly.  There are two big glitches:

1. Deleted messages reappear the next day, and read messages re-highlight as unread.  There's no predictability or periodicity to this.  It can happen in an hour, or in two days.

2. When you reply to an email on the Android, it saves thousands of copies in your Yahoo! sent mail box.  Last night I deleted 46000 messages.

This is what I've done so far.  I've followed the Verizon and internet directions:

  1. Make sure Wi-Fi is turned off
  2. Press the E-Mail icon (the default Android E-Mail application)
  3. Enter your Yahoo E-Mail address and password
  4. Press "Manual Setup" in the lower left hand corner
  5. For "Incoming Server Settings" set the IMAP server to "imap.mail.yahoo.com" and the Port to 143
  6. For "Outgoing Server Settings" set the SMTP Server to "smtp.mobile.mail.yahoo.com" and the Port to 587
  7. Check "Require sign-in" and press Next
  8. Select how often your Droid will check for Email, and choose default options
  9. Give the account a name and set your display name for outgoing messages
With these instructions the phone deals with email properly except for the two glitches noted above.

I have tried variations:

  1. Removed the "mobile" in step 6 (so it is just smtp.mail.yahoo.com).  No.
  2. I have turned off the "saved sent messages" in the Yahoo! Mail account options.  It still saves.
  3. I have entered the username as both" XXX@yahoo".com and just XXX.  No.
  4. I have tried this with the free Yahoo! Mail as well as with the paid Yahoo! Mail Plus.  No.
  5. I have tried driving over it.  No.
  6. I have tried changing the outgoing settings to plus.smtp.mail.yahoo.com as well as plus.smtp.mobile.mail.yahoo.com

I realize I can just switch to GMail, but if anyone knows how to resolve this, please let me know.

Update:

7. I tried changing the incoming mail server to imap.n.mail.yahoo.com.  No.


I determined that the copies are made each time the Android connects to Yahoo to check for emails, e.g. every 15 minutes, every time you send another email, or every time you hit refresh.  It makes 2-3 copies each time (can't figure out why) but over the course of a day...

Update 1/24/10



The problem appears to be hardware or carrier, not software.  The Motorola Droid runs 2.0 and has the problem, while mytouch runs 1.8 and is free of this abomination.

However, the  Nexus One on Tmobile has the problem, too. He said he fixed the problem by removing himself from his Contacts.  This did not work for me (I wasn't in the contacts.)  (Nope-- this turned out not to work.)







Comments

what is this 'yahoo' you sp... (Below threshold)

January 18, 2010 4:41 PM | Posted by bryon: | Reply

what is this 'yahoo' you speak of?

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Yahoo? The slum of the inte... (Below threshold)

January 18, 2010 5:37 PM | Posted by Jason: | Reply

Yahoo? The slum of the internet? If you're living in a slum, you've got bigger issues than selecting the right plaster to patch up the holes in your walls from the last drive-by.

Move!

Vote up Vote down Report this comment Score: 3 (3 votes cast)
There are probably google e... (Below threshold)

January 18, 2010 5:58 PM | Posted by Anonymous: | Reply

There are probably google engineers giggling about shifting you to gmail, even as you read this.

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Wow. This sounds like bug i... (Below threshold)

January 18, 2010 7:41 PM | Posted by Fargo: | Reply

Wow. This sounds like bug in the imap implementation to me, on one side or another. If that's the case I don't know what the end user can really do about it. Apparently there's been a ton of problems between Android and Yahoo. Good luck.

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Found <a href="http://code.... (Below threshold)

January 18, 2010 8:17 PM | Posted by Chris: | Reply

Found this thread suggesting it is a bug in the way the Yahoo & Zimbra servers implement IMAP.

The android client is apparently issuing a valid command to the IMAP server, so it may not be a big priority for the android development team to "fix".

Several users also commented switching to the K-9 Mail application, as it does not seem to suffer from this issue.

I would just switch to a gmail account, and set it up to grab your yahoo account email. Gmail will use the appropriate reply-to email address depending if it is sent to your gmail/yahoo.

Gmail Settings -> Accounts and Import -> "Send mail from another address", and then also "Check mail using POP3"

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Surfing this site should ne... (Below threshold)

January 19, 2010 2:33 AM | Posted by Anonymous: | Reply

Surfing this site should net you a usable answer, if I recall correctly.
http://www.androidcentral.com/

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Switching to Gmail for this... (Below threshold)

January 19, 2010 11:43 AM | Posted by Anonymous: | Reply

Switching to Gmail for this reason would be giving in to the worst form of technological coercion. It is like a captor baiting you with an offer of water after having locked you in the basement with their Gimp for 12 hours.

Switching email addresses isn't something trivial either although if support for Yahoo's IMAP on mobile devices is problematic you may need to address the issue on both sides. When situations like this perturb me enough I tend to axe both parties problematic products.

If it is too late though to return the phone I would push for reconciliation through the problematic client device being made to conform to the expectations of the service which I am assuming has served you satisfactorily through its tenure fulfilling your email needs.

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wow, still using yahoo? is ... (Below threshold)

January 19, 2010 2:49 PM | Posted by Anonymous: | Reply

wow, still using yahoo? is there some good reason for that we are overlooking?

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My husband's droid gets lon... (Below threshold)

January 19, 2010 3:40 PM | Posted by Kathleen: | Reply

My husband's droid gets lonely. Unbidden, it calls me on my work cell -not my iphone, you know, trying to have a relationship with me behind my iphone's back. The droid has issues, probably best discussed in therapy.

I don't trust the droid. It either is too stupid to remember its own name -and why it must incessantly repeat it- or it thinks its owner is too stupid to remember. Either way, it's not intact if you know what I mean.

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"Switching to Gmail for thi... (Below threshold)

January 19, 2010 4:56 PM | Posted by Anonymous: | Reply

"Switching to Gmail for this reason would be giving in to the worst form of technological coercion."

Except that it's just as likely that this is a problem from the Yahoo end. So is not switching submitting to technological coercion?

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What is this 'yahoo' you sp... (Below threshold)

January 20, 2010 12:08 AM | Posted by Mimimi: | Reply

What is this 'yahoo' you speak of? [2]

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My condolences....I alterna... (Below threshold)

January 20, 2010 9:34 PM | Posted by retriever: | Reply

My condolences....I alternate between a Sprint blackberry (most reliable data and email but the screen is too small for much blogging), and an Iphone. The Iphone is the best for mobile blogging, tho I wish it had a slide out keyboard. Where I live, it works beautifully, despite all propaganda against AT and T. It even works and gets internet and email at our summer place where all other cell phones don't work properly and we have to walk from spot to spot to get a connection on Sprint. Atho I grant you Verizon has a better reputation, and better service in some areas. I hope you figure it out. The Droid certainly LOOKS cool.

As far as the email goes, one work around might be to temporarily forward all your Yahoo mail to a new gmail account then you will get it fine. You can always close the gmail account, once you get the Yahoo one configured on the phone. I did this once on a cellphone that could not configure my .mac account properly.

In my experience, tho, the most reliable mobile email service is via Blackberry and it's encrypted (I keep mine to be sure I get kiddie, legal or family health related messages). Virtually all other mobile devices (even the Iphone) periodically crump out. The mac servers notoriously get overloaded (tho they let people blame AT and T).

Good luck.

Really well done post on the guy who killed his wife and kids, by the way. I've been a faithful lurker for a while...

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See above update. Appar... (Below threshold)

January 21, 2010 12:01 AM | Posted by Alone: | Reply

See above update. Apparently, the copies are generated each time the phone connects to Yahoo, two copies at a time. So if I send mail A, it saves two copies. When I send mail B, it saves 2 Bs, and 2 more As (so now you have 4).

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Have you trid pop3 (rather ... (Below threshold)

January 21, 2010 1:21 AM | Posted by acute_mania: | Reply

Have you trid pop3 (rather than imap) for incoming mail?

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Wait, what? People still us... (Below threshold)

January 21, 2010 8:48 AM | Posted by Anonymous: | Reply

Wait, what? People still use Yahoo! email? Thats your problem right there.

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Try this in google: right c... (Below threshold)

January 22, 2010 1:22 AM | Posted by David Johnson: | Reply

Try this in google: right clicking on the unopened message in the In Box and choosing to do one of 15 different actions- like reply, mark as read, clear flag, etc.

Oh that's right ... google can't do that. It thinks the inbox is exactly the same as a web page and can only offer web page options like "view background image" and "bookmark this page."

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Last, I know you'r... (Below threshold)

January 22, 2010 11:30 AM | Posted by KWL: | Reply

Last,

I know you're tech savvy but to follow up on a previous thread and perhaps add some clarity for others reading the thread, you may want to forward (or pass-through) your Yahoo email through a gmail account so that you can enjoy both. Sure you'll have email in both places (which you can easily ignore; or manage once you decide on what strategy you want to take, delete off yahoo, archive in gmail, etc....) but you'll improve your Droid experience and keep your Yahoo account.

I forward an ancient email account through my gmail account in order to keep an "antique" address much as some hold on to antique license plates. But I enjoy all the great capabilities of gmail rather than suffering an antique email system.

As well there are surprising advantages to gmail's system that I take advantage of. But, rather than pitch gmail at you, let me also offer that there are other email applications available for the droid that you can use and more coming so hopefully you'll not suffer long.

KWL

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@David Johnson: You clearly... (Below threshold)

January 22, 2010 12:48 PM | Posted, in reply to David Johnson's comment, by Anonymous: | Reply

@David Johnson: You clearly have no idea how Gmail works since all those features you claim to be missing are actually present and are available directly on the site, rather than through some right-click menu

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Is that why I have a gmail ... (Below threshold)

January 23, 2010 8:01 PM | Posted by Anonymous: | Reply

Is that why I have a gmail account I use in conjunction with a non-profit I do work for? The feature I alluded to is exactly and precisely missing in gmail, as you are well aware. Drag and drop is another. I'm not a fanboy. Software is software. Google is just another big-ass company. It's not the holy grail. I like some of it's features ... especially as they're free. But I prefer yahoo. That's all. If I needed free imap or pop forwarding ... it'd be a different story. In any case, these are all just internet mail programs. I'm using Outlook-Exchange and it just works for my business needs.

But I apologize for starting this ... after all, Alone is asking for some sort of fix as opposed to cheap shots against or testimonials for ... yahoo mail.

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Apologies ... that would be... (Below threshold)

January 23, 2010 8:04 PM | Posted by David Johnson: | Reply

Apologies ... that would be my post above ...

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I actually have the same is... (Below threshold)

January 25, 2010 12:59 PM | Posted by Oscar: | Reply

I actually have the same issue with yahoo and the iPhone. I will at times receive 100 deleted email messages in my inbox and they will appear new.
I have moved away from this address and use gmail mostly.

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Maybe not all of like have ... (Below threshold)

January 29, 2010 3:51 PM | Posted, in reply to Anonymous's comment, by Anonymous: | Reply

Maybe not all of like have the most evil tech company since Microsoft absolutely tracking and analyzing absolutely every thing we say and do online and then keeping those records indefinitely.

Could also be that some of us are old enough to remember the days before free online email services and have email addresses that date back to rocketmail and any other number of the original free email services that the once mighty yahoo bought up.

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@DavidJohnson: While that f... (Below threshold)

February 18, 2010 11:18 PM | Posted, in reply to Anonymous's comment, by Dave Watts: | Reply

@DavidJohnson: While that feature is "exactly and precisely" missing from the Gmail web interface, that's not a very useful thing to point out, since there's a functionally equivalent feature in its place. After all, I can't right-click with a one-button mouse either, yet I can still get the same task accomplished with a nearly equivalent number of steps of nearly equivalent complexity.

But in any case, you can use your beloved Outlook with Gmail anyway, using either IMAP or Google Apps Sync if you're using the GAFYD version of Gmail. Of course, you'll lose threaded conversations, cross-categorization, an integrated message search that actually works and integrated chat that gets archived like other mail, but you'll have right-click and drag-and-drop.

With regard to the original problem in this post, I'd second the recommendation to set up a Gmail account, forward your mail from Yahoo, and configure the Gmail account to send using your Yahoo address. The Gmail integration with the Droid is very, very nice. Or, just ditch the phone and get a different one if your 15-day window is still open.

Dave Watts, CTO, Fig Leaf Software

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Great columns! Thought you... (Below threshold)

May 25, 2010 2:05 PM | Posted by VA psychiatrist: | Reply

Great columns! Thought you might have some comment on this - Res ipsa loquitur...

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