How to set up and send email on iPhone and iPad

Keeping in touch with friends, family and work colleagues usually involves email at some point, and if you’ve recently acquired an iPhone or iPad then you’ll want to get the Mail app set up straight away so you can join in those conversations.

In this article we show how to set up and send email on your iOS devices.

Adding email accounts automatically

iOS provides two main methods for setting up email accounts on an iPhone or iPad (the steps are the same on both). The first, and the one you’re most likely to use, is the automatic route.

As the name suggests, this fills in most of the details on your behalf, as long as the email account is from one of the large providers such as Google (Gmail), Microsoft (Hotmail, Outlook and Exchange), Yahoo, AOL, or Apple’s own iCloud.

To use this approach, open the Settings app on your device (it has a silver/grey cog icon), scroll down until you find Passwords & Accounts, then tap on it.

On the next page you’ll find the option to Add Account. Tap this, then from the menu that appears select your email provider.

How to set up and send email on iPhone or iPad: Settings

Enter your details then tap Next. Mail will check that everything is correct.

When this is done you’ll be given the option to activate various features from your mail account – these usually include Mail, Contacts, Calendars and so forth.

How to set up and send email on iPhone and iPad: Yahoo account

Tap the button next to the ones you want to use and they will appear in the relevant apps on your device. So, for example, adding Hotmail contacts will then make them available in the general Contacts app, and any appointments you have in your Google Calendar will sync with the Apple Calendar app.

If you have any problems with that latter, then check out our How to sync Google Calendar to iPhone guide.

When you’re happy with the settings, tap Save to complete the process.

Adding email accounts manually

Should your email provider not appear on the list above, you can still set it up manually. For this, you will need to know various details, not just your address and password but also the Incoming Mail Server and Outgoing Mail Server.

Don’t worry, though, these will all be available from your provider. Either try contacting them directly or Googling the account type and setup details.

Once you have the information to hand, go to Settings > Passwords & Accounts > Add Account, then tap the Other option at the bottom of the list.

Fill in the email address and password, and a description (this can be whatever you like), then tap Next. If you’re in luck then you might find that all the necessary details are completed automatically, but if that’s not the case then you’ll see a page where you can enter them.

How to set up and send emails on iPhone or iPad: Add account

Select between either a POP or IMAP account (your provider will tell you which one you have), then complete the rest of the fields. When it’s all done, tap Next then Save and you should start to see messages appearing in the Mail app.

Sending an email

Now that your email account is in place, it’s time for a test run. We’ll do this by preparing and sending a message to one of your contacts.

Open the Mail app then tap on the Write icon (which looks like a square piece of paper with a pen sticking out) in the bottom-right corner.

Enter the email address of your intended recipient, add a title in the Subject field then tap on the blank space beneath it to start typing your message.

How to set up and send emails on iPhone or iPad: Send test email

When you’ve finished, check that the From field has the email address you want to use to send the message. If not, tap the address that’s there and you should see a list of the different available email accounts on your device (presuming you have more than one). Select the one you want, then tap Send.

That’s it: your email account should now be fully functional. For guides to other email features on the iPhone and iPad, see our How to send email attachments, How to send large documents and files, and How to recover deleted emails tutorials.

We also cover how to set up email on your Mac here.