When comparing Evolution vs Alpine, the Slant community recommends Evolution for most people. In the question“What are the best native e-mail clients for Linux?” Evolution is ranked 4th while Alpine is ranked 11th.
Ranked in these QuestionsQuestion Ranking
Pro Great integration with Gnome environment
Pro Manages contacts, tasks, calendar and memos as well
Pro Supports exchange servers
Evolution is one of the few Linux desktop e-mail clients that's supports exchange servers.
Pro Clean interface with 2 layout variants
Going to View > Preview has the option of switching between "Classical View" and "Vertical View".
Pro Good support for Google's services
Pro Excellent GPG support
The integration with GPG is excellent. You can sign, encrypt, decrypt, authenticate and verify GPG signatures and GPG signed/encrypted email messages. All of that is just a setting away.
Pro HTML rendering is great
Of the many email clients available on GNU/Linux, Evolution has the best HTML renderer. It renders HTML and the entire email content exactly like it would appear on a full blown web browser. Not many email clients are capable of doing that.
Pro Extremely user-friendly
Pro Can use the built-in text editor or can be integrated with another text editor
Alpine comes with pico, a lightweight text editor which can also be used as a standalone tool. It can also be integrated with vi, vim, emacs, etc... if the user prefers to do so.
Pro On-screen contextual help
Alpine has contextual help that can be displayed on-screen. Removing the need to consult the man pages every time you forget a command or how to do something inside it.
Con RAM heavy
Very heavy on RAM usage.
Con Only available on Linux
If you have to switch to another platform for whatever reason, you will need to search for a different email client.
Con Tied to Gnome
Pulls in Gnome.
Con Can't choose different settings for each mail account
Settings have to applied to all mail accounts.
Con Updates are not frequent
Alpine is not updated frequently. This means that new features, bug fixes or security updates come much later than in other email clients.