Apple adds encrypted email service among the default apps on iOS devices

Encrypted email service Skiff is now among the default email options on all iOS devices.

This doesn’t mean that it would replace Apple Mail completely, though. Yet, it represents an important step for secure email services seeking to convince more people to make the switch from Big Tech apps.

While adopting security software like encrypted messaging apps and VPN services has become standard protection, ditching your Gmail or Outlook account looks too much of a burden, too often. Even better, now that Apple made the swap a bit easier.

Skiff, privacy as default

“Skiff is built on the idea that privacy should be the default. Choosing to protect your privacy online needs to be easy—not a privilege reserved for people who have time to jump through hoops or get a cryptography degree. Becoming a default iOS mail app was critical to our mission,” Andrew Milich, Skiff’s CEO, told TechRadar.

Together with its CTO Jason Ginsberg, Milich founded the encrypted collaboration platform in 2020 to give users more control over the information they share online. Its first product, Pages, was launched in 2021. Both Skiff Mail and Drive were then publicly released in 2022.

Skiffs operates under a zero-trust privacy approach, meaning that it doesn’t store nor collect any sensitive user information, like location. Everything is end-to-end encrypted and open source, too.

Now, after about two years of operations, Apple has officially recognized Skiff as a valuable alternative to the bigger names out there and entered into its elite group of default mail apps.    

Milich explained that the selection was the result of more than a year of product improvements. These include better offline support, more secure sign-in options, and ensuring Skiff seamless compatibility with all email links on iOS.

The news is out: Skiff Mail is approved by @apple to be a DEFAULT mail app on iOSDownload/update: https://t.co/RhL5W1NDSU pic.twitter.com/om43GR9e4yJune 6, 2023

While the likes of Gmail, Yahoo, Outlook, and even less popular email services like Spark already were already included among the default options, the privilege isn’t extended to all the best-encrypted email apps out there. 

At the time of writing, the service developed by homonymous virtual private network provider ProtonMail is a default choice, but many others like Tutanota, SecureMyEmail, and PrivateMail aren’t—yet.

“We are thrilled that Apple has also made privacy a key priority, and has worked with us to ensure that end-to-end encrypted email is now seamlessly integrated with iOS,” said Milich.

To set Skiff Mail as your default mail choice, first head to the Apple Store and download the app on your device. After that, click on Settings > Skiff Mail and set the app as your default.

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