How to use Gmail offline: Read emails offline on your phone or computer

Being able to access Gmail offline is important to many jobs. It’s good to be able to work on the move, but you won’t always be able to connect to Wi-Fi or data services, so knowing how  to tend to your Gmail account while offline is essential.

Unfortunately, it’s not something everyone can do. You’ll need to be using the Gmail app on an Android device, or through Chrome on a computer, in order to be able to use its offline functions. Thankfully, on a computer Chrome is free to download.

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In addition, you’ll need to make sure your device has enough space to store emails offline. Depending on how many emails from your inbox you’ll want to access offline, you’ll need varying amounts of space, from only 100mb to well over 100gb. Regardless of your size needs, here’s how you can use Gmail offline on Android, iOS, Windows 10 and macOS.

How to use Gmail offline on Android or iOS

Gmail offline is only available using the Gmail app on Android device users. Sorry iPhone or iPad users, you just won’t be able to do it!

  1. Open the Gmail app and click the “menu” icon (three horizontal bars) in the top left.
  2. Scroll down and select “Settings”.
  3. Select the account you wish to use Gmail offline with.
  4. Scroll to the bottom of this menu to the “Data usage” section.
  5. Check the “Sync Gmail” box.
  6. Below this, choose how many days worth of mail to sync. You can select as little as one day, or as high as 999. Choose depending on how much space your device has — everyone receives a different amount of emails, but as a general rule of thumb each day of emails will take up about 10mb.
  7. Now you can view, write and delete emails offline, and when your device connects to the internet your inbox and outbox will be updated fittingly.

How to use Gmail offline on Windows 10 or macOS

You can only use Gmail’s offline functions on a Windows 10 or macOS computer if you’re using Chrome version 61 or higher, make sure you’re up-to-date before trying to use Gmail offline.

  1. When in Gmail, click the “Settings” cog to the top right of the screen, just above the list of emails.
  2. Click “Settings” from the drop-down menu that appears.
  3. Find “Offline” on the list of settings menus available, and click it.
  4. Check the “Enable offline mail” box.
  5. On the “Sync settings” option, decide if you want emails stored from the last seven, 30, or 90 days. This will make emails from that time period available offline — remember more emails take up more storage room, so if you don’t have much space choose 7 days.
  6. Under Security, choose either Keep offline data on my computer or Remove offline data from my computer then click Save Changes.
  7. There’s also an option to download attachments too. These will take up a lot of space if there are many in the chosen time period, so uncheck this box if you won’t need them.


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