Short for electronic mail, e-mail or email is information stored on a computer that is exchanged between two users over telecommunications. More simply, e-mail is a message that may contain text, files, images, or other attachments sent through a network to a specified individual or group of individuals. The first e-mail was sent by Ray Tomlinson in 1971. By 1996, more electronic mail was being sent than postal mail.
To send and receive e-mail messages, you can use an e-mail program, also known as an e-mail client, such as Microsoft Outlook or Gmail. When using an email client, you must have a server that stores and delivers your messages, which is provided by your ISP or in some cases, another company. An e-mail client needs to connect to a server to download new email, whereas email stored online updates automatically when you visit the site.