Prior to now, users were encumbered with the rather long and clumsy @protonmail.com or @protonmail.ch address. Now they’ll be able to use the more concise @pm.me instead.
The company announced a year ago that it had acquired a new two-letter domain. Though the new domain is open to everyone globally, those with a free ProtonMail account will only be able to receive emails at their @pm.me account. To send from that address, you’ll need to sign up for one of the paid plans.
It’s worth noting here that you won’t be able to sign up for an @pm.me address during the ProtonMail account setup process — that is basically tethered to your @protonmail.com address, which you’ll need to set up first. This makes sense, given that the company doesn’t want someone to come along and steal your username with an @pm.me domain.
To get started with this new domain option, head to your Settings in the app, locate the “pm.me” section in the left-hand menu, and hit “activate.” You can also add an @pm.me alternative to any other ProtonMail email addresses you have associated with your account.
On the surface, this is a small rollout, but it is the kind of feature that typically resonates well with users. It saves them having to spell out the full ProtonMail domain to those who are unfamiliar with the service, plus it looks a hell of a lot neater written down.
The company said that before settling on @pm.me, it dabbled with a few alternatives, including @pmail.com — but that one would obviously have caused a little bit of confusion with a certain other email service out there. Using “pm” is clever as it’s not only a contraction of “ProtonMail,” it’s also a commonly used acronym for “private message,” which is basically ProtonMail’s bread and butter.
ProtonMail was founded out of CERN in 2013 and launched globally in March 2016. The company has added a number of new features and tools to its arsenal over the past couple of years, including two-factor authentication (2FA), Tor support, multilingual access, support for desktop email clients, and a standalone virtual private network app called ProtonVPN.
Alongside this latest update, ProtonMail introduced a couple of other handy features, including a “merge contacts” tool and a preview option for calendar attachments. These updates come shortly after ProtonMail revealed it was expanding its encrypted contacts feature to its mobile app.