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I have started using my iPad again after long inactivity. The mail app shows 7,288 unread email. I would like to get rid of that red number, the problem is that the mail app does not load old email – and so I can't mark them as read. By the way, is there a way to mark ALL that 7,288 as read in one go?

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  • Hi, what email service are you using? Gmail, Hotmail, Yahoo, iCloud, Exchange? Nov 13 '16 at 13:32
  • @JaimeSantaCruz, I am using Gmail
    – Emy
    Nov 13 '16 at 14:19
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If using Gmail, there are no user-accesible parameters to limit how much email does iOS download to your device, but in my experience old email is downloaded "on-demand", while browsing mailboxes.

The easiest way to get rid of the unread sign is to go through http://gmail.com and delete, archive or mark as read all unread email. That will sync sooner or later with your device if it is properly configured.
If by chance it is configured with the POP3 protocol (instead of IMAP), the easiest way would be to erase and add again. This may prove problematic because depending on the configuration and set-up, you may lose email by deleting the account on your device.

It may resolve on its own: if you haven't used it in a while and it's configured with IMAP, and those emails are marked as "read" on the server, it may be that the device it's just delayed in updating the information.

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Actually I found out that the problem was simply due to the fact that I had a lot of unread messages in the "social" and "promotion" folders on Gmail. Best way to get rid of all of those unread emails: do a search using the query is:unread on Gmail's web interface.

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