The Bottom Line
Bluebottle could offer more tools for efficiently handling mail, though, online storage is in a somewhat short supply, and challenge/response filtering comes with its own share of problems, too.
- Bluebottle filters spam using a challenge/response system that allows only validated senders in
- You can access a Bluebottle account using POP (paid accounts offer IMAP, too)
- Bluebottle lets you send emails using rich text formatting
- Bluebottle does not offer free-form labels or smart folders to organize mail
- Pending emails are not ranked by the degree to which they resemble spam
- Bluebottle could offer more online storage
- Bluebottle offers email accounts with 250 MB of online storage (1 GB for premium accounts).
- Your Bluebottle address is protected by various spam filtering techniques including a challenge/response system.
- Only known contacts' mail goes to your Inbox. New senders can authorize themselves by responding to a challenge.
- You can import existing contacts from CSV files to your Bluebottle "Allowed Senders" list.
- Bluebottle accounts can be accessed from any email program using POP or IMAP.
- Web-based access to Bluebottle can be secured by SSL encryption.
- You can save mail to custom folders and flag messages as important.
- Bluebottle lets you compose messages using rich HTML text formatting.
Guide Review - Bluebottle - Email Service
If you thought "no" in response to both questions, Bluebottle can be for you. Bluebottle uses a couple of spam filtering techniques — most prominently challenging unknown senders — to ban just about all unwanted mail from your Inbox.
Good mail can get filtered, too. Bluebottle accepts mail only from authorized senders, and while new senders can respond to a challenge, not all do. Newsletters in particular have a problem authorizing with every recipient. (Bluebottle offers a challenge which has the sender type the intended recipient's full name, something newsletter senders certainly cannot do. It's better not to use this form of challenge in Bluebottle.)
If you want to make sure no desired message got caught, you can visit Bluebottle's "Pending" folder and manually authorize senders. It would be great for Bluebottle to sort the messages by their degree of resembling typical spam.
Now that only good mail is left, Bluebottle turns into a simple but quite functional email service. Labels and smart folders would be nice, but Bluebottle makes up for that to some degree with POP and IMAP access. If you want to keep lots of mail, you'll use that to work around Bluebottle's comparatively small online mailbox size.
Oh, and do not despair if the CAPTCHA puzzle you have to solve to sign up for a Bluebottle account seems frustratingly difficult. Eventually, one that can be solved will come up.