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There will be times when you need to refer back to a previously received email, but you might not remember which out of the scores or even hundreds of emails in your inbox the information you need is in. That's when Mail Search bar comes to the rescue. The Search Bar is actually hidden at the very top of the list of emails in your Inbox, or any other folder of emails you happen to be looking at. To reveal it, just pull the list down slightly, or if you're scrolled way down, remember you can tap the top of your screen to jump back up to the top. Also, if you want to search all of your inboxes simultaneously, go back to the main Mail page, and tap All Inboxes.
To perform your search, tap in the Search field and begin typing. Notice you can search the From, To, and Subject fields of your emails, or tap All to search all three fields simultaneously as well as the content of your emails. Here, you can see that the messages that match my search are now listed. I can tap any one of them to read them. Now if you use an IMAP or an exchange email account and you didn't find the message you were looking for, one possibility is that the message is old enough that it's no longer on your phone. For example, I'll go back to the list of emails, and clear out the Search field.
And let's say that I know the word 'Party' appeared at one point in the Subject line of an email I received. So, I'll tap Subject and type 'Party'. Notice we see the option here to continue the search on the server, which lets your iPhone or iPod connect to your email server, and search the older messages there. And here, it's found an older email that has the word 'Party' in the subject. You can actually control how many messages are stored on your phone and we'll take a look at how to do that in an upcoming movie. But what I want to get across here is that if you have an IMAP account, you can still access older emails on your server from your iPhone, or iPod touch.
But if you're using a POP email account, older messages will no longer be accessible on the server. Most likely, you'll find them on your computer inside of whichever email program you use there. As I mentioned earlier, if you have the option to switch to IMAP email, I recommend doing so. One last thing I want to mention about Search is to remind you that you can also search your email from outside of the Mail app. From your home screen, just flick the screen to the right to reveal the Spotlight Search area. Spotlight searches your entire device. Here, you can type-in your search term. Maybe I want to look for other messages from my friend Jade.
Notice that the possible matches are not just emails, but other items begin to appear as well. I see here contact info as well as mail messages. We also have the option to search the web or search Wikipedia. But if I wanted to read one of her messages, I just tap it and it opens in Mail. Now, if you find the list of results in the Spotlight Search too busy with all the different types of search results you can have, you can go into Settings>General, and Spotlight Search. Here, you can tap to uncheck and check the kind of items you want to see results for, and you can even drag their handles up and down in the list to prioritize them.
So, those are the ways you can search your email as well as the rest of your iPhone or iPod touch.
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