For the privacy-oriented, ProtonMail was one of the best secure email options – you can get a (admittedly basic) account for free and enjoy end-to-end encryption for your communications when sending messages to other ProtonMail users. But the company’s plans are a bit outdated. Free accounts only have 500 MB of storage, while the € 4 / month plan takes you to a moderate 4 GB of storage with some other restrictions, such as a daily maximum of 1000 messages.
From today, however, the company facilitates the all-in transition to ProtonMail and other services it offers, such as VPN, cloud storage and encrypted calendar. In the future, ProtonMail will simply be renamed Proton, promoting its entire privacy-focused range and updating all of its designs. The company has a new website (proton.me) and both new and existing users can use the @ proton.me address instead of the old @ protonmail.com option, if they have one.
From now on, Proton will offer three plans: Free, Mail Plus and Unlimited. The new free tier expands storage to 1 GB and remains quite limited – you can only send 150 messages a day and have three tags and folders, for example. You can also access the basic Proton VPN tool and the Proton User Calendar, although you are limited to a single calendar in this program. Proton has long said that since it does not run ads, it relies on revenue subscriptions, so it is no surprise that the free program is limited.
The Mail Plus program will cost € 5 / month, although you can get it for less if you sign up for a year or two, all in one download. However, it is a big upgrade over the old design. Users now receive 15 GB of storage that they share between their email and the Proton Drive cloud storage account. There are no restrictions on how many messages you can send or how many tags and folders you can create, and it also supports IMAP email clients through the Proton Bridge tool. There are also additional features, such as a new “short domain” email alias (@ pm.me) that you can use to send and receive messages, and 20 calendars that you can share with other users.
Finally, the Unlimited program costs € 12 / month. the company places it as a way to simultaneously acquire the top tier of all its services. That means 500 GB of total storage, making Proton Drive much more sustainable for use as a backup service. You can use Proton Mail with up to three different custom domain addresses (one in Mail Plus) and a total of 15 different email addresses (10 in Mail Plus).
But the big difference is that you get the full Proton VPN with Unlimited, instead of the more basic option that comes with the other two Proton programs. This includes up to 10 VPN connections instead of one, a total of 1,700+ servers in 63 different countries (instead of 100 servers in three countries) and higher speeds. For now, Proton will continue to offer its VPN as a standalone product – you can find details about it, as well as the analysis between the basic free VPN and the one you get with the full version here.
If you are new to the Proton world, the company currently has iOS apps for mail and VPN services and Android apps for mail, VPN and calendar. The Drive cloud storage option is still technically in beta, so there are no mobile apps yet – they are scheduled for later this year.
And while Proton has no major updates to its mail service or other applications other than integrating them with its new design language, the company has made some updates in recent months. Last month, iOS Mail received some design updates and a dark feature, as well as a “chat” feature to make it easier to read message threads. In February, Proton enabled encrypted search in the Mail web application, and in January added a tracker blocker.
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