This is a question for developers of S60 !
Please comment on this!
Thank you!

I'm a mobile application designer developing mobile solutions for business customers. My area of interest is messaging.

I've had a few E series phones over the past years. Currently I'm using an E51 which I love! I've had E50 and E61 as well. I haven't come accross to such a well designed and built phone by Nokia like the E51. Well done Nokia.

However, I'm interested in your experience regarding E-mail. There is a bug or feature (I couldn't decide yet) which has been there in all S60 based phones and is still there in the newest ones.

I'm using IMAP based E-mail because that fits to my daily workflow. I'm handling my e-mail box from multiple computers (home, work, whatever) so IMAP is the solution for me, I don't want to download via POP3 my mails to all the PCs. My clients are set to check for new e-mail every 5 minutes or so. My phone does this periodic checking only in 2 hour intervals over Edge or 3G.

And here comes the problem. It is about how S60 firmware considers an email to be a new one, or an existing one. You see, let's suppose you get a new e-mail to your mailbox. You are out of office, not at home, somewhere on the way. Your phone checks e-mails periodically and informs you about this new e-mail with sound, with vibration and via the active standby plugin. Cool.
What happens if you are in the office. You sit in front of your PC and your mail client is running. It checks for new mails in your IMAP mailbox every 5 minutes. Voila, you have a new mail. You client tells you this. OK. Your phone is gonna check new mails only an hour from now, so it's quiet.

You read your new email on the PC and mark the recently received mail as "read". OK, cool, no new e-mails.

You go out, you are on the way again. Suddenly your phone is making the sound and vibrates. Uuups, a new e-mail has been received. Hm. Who is it, you check it, and you see that actually, your mailbox has been updated with the e-mail that you had already read in the office. On the active standby screen you see that the mail is actually "read", so it is not a new e-mail. S60 just updated the mailbox and saw that there is a new item in the mailbox, without checking its properties if it's a read or unread one.

S60 shouldn't notify you about new items in your mailbox, because you don't care about the phone not knowing the exact status of your mailbox at the given time. You just want to have notification when a NEW mail is received that you hadn't seen so far.

This is what IMAP is all about, isn't it? In case of POP3, the above scenario would be understandable, because in POP3 the client is not aware of the status of the mail. But you select IMAP that should be supported by the client, and according to specs, it is!

I haven't seen any nokia phone that would handle this situation correctly. I hope Nokia will some day or later do something about this.

Please comment, am I missing the trick that you already know for this?

For all those in business communities who want to spare battery life and therefore do not use 3G, IMAP polling through Edge is the only reasonable choice to check for mail. It shouldn't be a problem (and is not for other vendors) but S60 seems to miss the trick yet.