In case you didn’t know: iCloud email has limits on daily messages and recipients

Watch out, or you might get locked out.

icloud icon 2015

Michele Sorbo writes in with a slight mystery:

I had a problem over the last 24 hours that in all my years as a Mac user have never run into. I was locked out of sending emails from my @mac account. It started when I wanted to reply to a group message and I didn’t realize the group had over 300 cc’s in it.

Michele recalled there’s a 100-recipient limit with iCloud (whether via @mac.com, @me.com, or @icloud.com). But she then received a second warning: “my message failed because I exceeded my sending limit. WHAT? I have a sending limit?” She consulted with the nearby Apple Store, where the staff hadn’t heard of this, either, and said her account wasn’t locked.

I use iCloud very casually for email, mostly relying on Fastmail for personal/business mail and IDG’s Outlook-connected system for Mac 911 messages. I’d never come across this, but sure enough, Apple has a support document that notes you may send no more than 200 outgoing messages a day with no more than 100 recipients per message. The daily cap is 1,000 recipients.

Apple says this is because “iCloud Mail service is designed primarily for personal use,” but that seems restrictive in 2016, when individuals can easily send tons of personal emails. I suspect people who communicate a lot mostly use iMessage and other text messaging.

Google’s limit with personal Gmail accounts is 500 messages a day and no more than 500 recipients in a single message, which seems more like it. (The paid G Suite service has much higher limits.) Fastmail’s paid accounts start at a limit of 4,000 outgoing emails per day with its $3 per month Basic offering.

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