The state of email

Despite everything we read and hear, email is still on the rise. With 4.1 billion addresses and 2.5 billion accounts worldwide, it is one of the biggest services out there. Three giants are dominating the market, especially for individuals:

  • Gmail with 900 million accounts
  • Microsoft with 475 million accounts
  • Yahoo! Mail with 100 million accounts

It is commonly said that managing email is extremely time consuming. But when you analyse the data, most people receive less than 10 emails per day and only 14% receive more than 20 email messages daily.

An underlying issue for managing an email environment is effective minimisation of graymail to enable your users to have an increased focus on priority messages. For businesses, “priority email” represents more than half of all messages (51%) but for individuals graymail is a huge problem, with a volume that accounts for up to 84% of their inbox. With this in mind, we can expect major email providers to release more and more features focused on categorisation and prioritisation triage.

As we previously illustrated in our mobile email infographic, the smartphone is the primary device used to consume emails, representing 50.12% of all email opens (67.03% if you include tablets). Throughout the day, smartphones are especially popular in the morning (before work hours), desktop computers dominate working hours and tablets are mostly used after work.


  • 4.1 billion addresses worldwide in 2014. Expected to be over 5.2 billion in 2018
  • 2.5 billion users in 2014 with an estimate of over 2.8 billion by 2018.

Email giants

  • Gmail: 900 million accounts
  • Microsoft: 475 million accounts
  • Yahoo!Mail 110 million accounts
  • Business inbox: 51 % priority email vs 49% commercial and promotional
  • Consumer inbox: 16% priority email vs 84% commercial and promotional

Emails received per day

  • 14% people receive more than 20 emails per day
  • 25% receive 6-10 daily messages
  • 46% receive five or fewer daily message

Email opens by device

  • Smartphone: 50.12%
  • Computer: 32.97%
  • Tablet: 16.91%
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