IncrediMail Issues and Problems
IncrediMail is a commercial, advertising supported email client that is compatible with Microsoft Windows operating systems and most Internet browsers. IncrediMail is popular for adding graphic technologies to emails including emoticons, ecards, sounds, animation and 3D effects. IncrediMail is graphically sophisticated and is currently available in 12 languages worldwide: English, German, French, Spanish, Portuguese, Italian, Dutch, Swedish, Chinese Traditional, Chinese Simplified and Japanese.
In 2001, only one year after its international launch, IncrediMail downloads reached 1 million, and its downloads are now in the millions annually. Proponents of IncrediMail laud the personalizing effects available through the program and its fun, original style that is thought to improve upon the monotony of other email clients.
IncrediMail is a free download that generates revenue with advertising and pop-ups that are written into the program. The Incredimail site supports the sale of products and services and displays external advertising. In addition to the regular Incredimail program there is also an Incredimail Gold Gallery that is available for purchase. Animated advertising is attached to the bottom of sent emails by the IncrediMail program in order to reach recipients of IncrediMail as well as senders.
Some users and critics dispute the validity of IncrediMail. It is debated on user discussion websites whether or not IncrediMail qualifies as spyware. The potential for the program to run unwanted code in the background is high due to the size of the file. The increased size of HTML emails makes Incredimail difficult to distinguish from spam in most automated filters and, as a result, some spammers have used this similarity to disguise their mail to get through filters. For users there are drawbacks to using IncrediMail because it is written in HTML and because of increased message sizes due to attached animation and embedded images. These features make messages take longer to send and require more bandwidth than text only mail. The operations of IncrediMail can slow also slow down the processes of a computer generally.
There are also legal controversies surrounding Incredimail due to the large amount of personal data the program collects. IncrediMail gathers statistics about the number of emails sent, the number and type of attachments used, and the dates and times of mail sent. Rather than refute such criticism, the risks clause included in the Incredimail software license agreement warns users of vulnerability to various security issues and does not ensure that use of the software is secure. As well, the license suggests that users may be subject to the unauthorized invasion of privacy and exposure, fraud, forgery, trespassing, and system contamination.