September 26, 2014 by Bill Johnson
Tocomail for Gmail is a kid-friendly Gmail client designed specifically to make emailing a simpler and safer experience so that parents don’t have to worry. The vibrant, colorful UI and fun tools is sure to grab the attention of young ones while the robust control over who they can communicate with is sure to give parents peace of mind. The app is free and includes in-app purchases.
Of course, using Tocomail requires a Google account with an active Gmail account attached to it. When you’re logged in, your first impression is probably that the app looks incredibly childish. However given its target demographic, that’s a compliment.
If you search Tocomail in the App Store, you may notice a very similar app is available: Tocomail – Safe Email for Kids. What’s the difference? Apparently, that app is actually for even younger kids, while Tocomail for Gmail is geared more toward older kids and teenagers. It’s probably a bit unnecessary for teenagers, so I imagine the differences between the two are comparable to a kids’ meal and a big kids’ meal at a fast food restaurant.
The color scheme of the inbox (and the entire app) is a mix of bright blue and to my mediocre eye either a yellow or very light green. Emails are organized reverse chronologically and categorized as such. Everything about Tocomail is dead simple to use. The button on the top right composes a new message and the top left opens all your contacts listed on the left as well as additional app settings – more on that later.
The Compose window features a To line, Subject line and text box to type your message and nothing more. The paper clip icon that usually attaches a file instead can add a photo from your camera or gallery, but the app also has a built-in drawing feature with an extensive range of tools and colors for kids to get creative drawing a picture to attach to an email.