How to Rename an eMail Account in iOS to be More Descriptive

Apr 2, 2014 - Leave a Comment

Mail for iOS If you have multiple email accounts setup with Mail app on your iPhone or iPad, you’ve probably noticed that each email account name defaults to the provider, like “iCloud”, “Gmail”, “Outlook”, and “Yahoo”. Those names aren’t the most explanatory, and it can become even more confusing when you have two mail accounts from the same service provider setup with Mail app, where you may end up with “Gmail” and “Gmail” or “Outlook” and “Outlook”, one of which may be the default address while the other is a miscellaneous inbox, with no obvious differentiator between the two. This is what it may look like in the Settings and Mail app Mailboxes view, a bit confusing until you go deeper:

Different Mail accounts with the same name, rename the email accounts in iOS

Instead of putting up with those nondescript and sometimes confusingly repetitive email account names, you can rename the account to something much more meaningful, like the email address, or the function of that account. This is handled through the iOS Mail app settings, and it simply changes the user side and view of things, it has no impact on how the email sends or presents to the outside world.

Rename a Mail account in iOS

In this example we’ll take an iPhone that has two Outlook.com email accounts setup on it, both of which are confusingly named the same thing in the Mail settings and Mail app. Let’s rename the mail account to give it a more descriptive name.

Renaming a Mail Account on the iPhone / iPad

This will rename the mail account description that you see in the Settings and Mail apps, it will not change the contact name of the account, and it has no impact on the outside world when sending emails. This will also not change an email address.

  1. Open the general “Settings” app on the iPhone / iPad home screen and then go to settings for “Mail, Contacts, Calendars”
  2. Tap on the specific email account which you want to rename
  3. At the next screen, tap on the email address itself near the top of the Settings panel
  4. Select a Mail account to rename in iOS

  5. Look under “Description” and enter the new identifying name for the email account, then tap on “Done” to set the change
  6. Rename iOS Mail account in iOS

The change will take effect immediately in both Mail Settings and, perhaps more importantly, in the Mail app itself when looking at the account Mailboxes and inbox views.

The newly chosen description becomes the new mail account name, seen here in this example by changing “Outlook” to “Name@Outlook”:

Rename an Email Account on iPhone, iPad, iPod touch

This is less important if you only have one account for each provider and you know exactly what they are just by looking at the mail provider name, but for those of us with multiple email accounts it can be really useful and help to quickly differentiate which account is which. My preference is to set them to look like email addresses, like “name@domain” since that is usually the most obvious indicator as to what the account is used for, but name them for whatever makes the most sense for you.

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Posted by: Paul Horowitz in iPad, iPhone, Tips & Tricks

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