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Old 09-15-2008, 05:30 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default HTML Email - Should I Get Plain Text Alternative?

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Hi, we prepare HTML emails for newsletters, etc. When sending, our mailer creates multipart messages with a Plain Text version that we create for those who do not have HTML email capabilities (or disable it).

When checking the mail on our BB (8830 - Curve), it doesn't appear to be displaying the Plain Text alternative of the email. It's kind of trying to do it's best to make a 'plain text' version of the HTML email, which is not very elegant (links to images, line breaks not great, etc.).

- Is this just the way Blackberrys work with HTML/Plain Text email?

- Have they always worked this way?

Thanks. I was totally assuming that since most Blackberrys don't render HTML email (until very recently), they would choose the included Plain Text version of the email by default. Was I mistaken???
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Old 12-06-2008, 02:31 PM   #2 (permalink)
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We also have this problem; a list sends us content-type multipart / alternative messages, and the BlackBerry (8700C in our case) always attempts to display the html part. This would be OK (there is no sophisticated formatting) except that MX Logic, our spam filer service, aliases all of the embedded links to very long strings so they can track and control clickbacks. A single link can fill up two BlackBerry screens, and the message is just unreadable to all but the most determined user.

One user says this started within the last year, around the time of a BlackBerry device software upgrade, but I can't verify that for sure.

We use BIS, not BES. Carrier is AT&T.
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Old 12-16-2008, 03:34 PM   #3 (permalink)
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OK. So is it safe to say that Blackberry's definitely DO NOT display the Plain Text Alternative in a Multi-Part email message?

If so, are there any other methods to control how someone on a Blackberry sees your HTML message? Or are you at the complete mercy of how Blackberry decides to parse and display HTML email?

Thanks again!
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Old 12-16-2008, 03:39 PM   #4 (permalink)
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You can disable HTML email in Messages > Options> Email Settings. Change Enable HTML Email to No. You have to do that for each email account set up on the device.
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Old 12-16-2008, 03:44 PM   #5 (permalink)
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This sounds more like an issue displaying HTML email on a device that's incapable of it. I don't necessarily think they 'want' to disable it. This appears to be HTML email trying to display on a device that's not yet HTML ready. Disabling HTML email will only make the email uglier won't it? As it was before HTML?

I do not believe the BlackBerry can determine whether or not it is able to display HTML, and subsequently request a plain text version of the email.
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Last edited by CO_BBTechie : 12-16-2008 at 03:46 PM.
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Old 12-16-2008, 04:25 PM   #6 (permalink)
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OK. As far as disabling HTML email - once that's done, does the BB default to the actual Plain Text version of a Multi-Part message instead of 'trying' to display the HTML in a stripped down manner? And I wonder how many people know to disable this and have. I wonder why it would not be disabled by default when the BB cannot display HTML email?!? That makes no sense.

And to Clifford, if what you stated is correct, than why does it appear that the BB is NOT displaying our Plain Text alternative that is embedded in the email (it is a Multi-Part MIME message)?
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Old 12-16-2008, 04:35 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jethrodesign View Post
OK. As far as disabling HTML email - once that's done, does the BB default to the actual Plain Text version of a Multi-Part message instead of 'trying' to display the HTML in a stripped down manner?
That's just the thing... I don't think it does.

Quote:
Originally Posted by jethrodesign View Post
And I wonder how many people know to disable this and have. I wonder why it would not be disabled by default when the BB cannot display HTML email?!? That makes no sense.
The HTML email option doesn't even exist if the device doesn't have the service books for it, and therefore cannot display HTML. BES version 4.1.6 is required for BES HTML email, and all BIS email should currently be able to display HTML email.

Quote:
Originally Posted by jethrodesign View Post
And to Clifford, if what you stated is correct, than why does it appear that the BB is NOT displaying our Plain Text alternative that is embedded in the email (it is a Multi-Part MIME message)?
I don't have an answer for this. I believe the device intelligence to be lacking.

And FYI - Clifford is the author of my quote, not my name
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