Getting iCloud (me.com) emails to Gmail

I’ve got an iPad Mini. It looks great (at some points — even fantastic)! But due to my current situation, I’ll stay with my Android and Gmail and will treat iPad as additional toy. At least for a while. Since I still had an empty slot in Gmail to add one another external mail server, from which I want to get all emails, I tried this trick with my iCloud / me.com / Apple ID mailbox. And failed.

If you’re looking for a quick answer to question “How can I sync my iCloud / me.com mailbox in Gmail“, the answer is quick, but you’re not going to like it: You can’t. Fortunately, there’s a workaround to this problem.

There are slide differencies between mail protocols used by iCloud and Gmail, which results in iCloud answer, perfectly valid according to proper RFC, being treated by Gmail as server error response and thus forbiding you from adding iCloud account to your Gmail. More details you should find in an answer to my StackExchange Web Applications question.

In the same answer you’ll find, that the only workaround for this problem is forward all iCloud emails to your Gmail mailbox (iCloud’s Support Section for this).

Next you should setup Gmail to be able to send emails via icloud.com servers. This link will help.

In general, you should undertake following steps:

  1. Go to iCloud’s Mail App, login and open Preferences screen by clicking gear icon in top-right corner.
  2. In the General pane, check Forward my email to, type the forwarding address in the text field and check Delete messages after forwarding below.
  3. Go to Gmail Settings Pane’s Accounts and Import tab and login. If it doesn’t open Preferences screen automatically, do this manually, by clicking gear icon in top-right corner and follow the usual way.
  4. Click Add another email address under Send mail as. A new window will pop. Enter your name and iCloud’s email address.
  5. Click Next and select second option to send email using external SMTP servers. iCloud’s mailbox parameters you’ll find here (SMTP server: smtp.mail.me.com / encryption: SSL / port: 587).

Remember to use full email address as user name, but in me.com, not icloud.com domain. If you receive errors using SSL (most likely you do), try using TLS instead.

That should be all. Of course, you have to pass verification phase, but this is as easy as getting code and pasting it into field at last step.

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