Email is due for an overhaul. In many cases, social networking has replaced it. But for those cases where you still rely on email, it's a lot like traveling back to 1995. The team behind upcoming iPhone app Mailbox want to change that, transporting email into the 21st century.
Email can only be altered so much, but the Mailbox team thinks it has cracked the case. They want to make mobile email less like desktop email, and more like a to-do list.
UPGRADE TO NEW ATLAS PLUS
More than 1,500 New Atlas Plus subscribers directly support our journalism, and get access to our premium ad-free site and email newsletter. Join them for just US$19 a year.UPGRADE
Mailbox is about gestures and inbox management. After reading an email, a short swipe to the right will archive it. Swipe a bit longer, and you'll delete it. Want to revisit the email later on? Swipe to the left, and choose when it will reappear.
21st century email?
Mailbox doesn't fundamentally change email, but perhaps it can change the email experience. If you regularly drown in a cluttered inbox, forget to respond to important messages, or simply appreciate minimal design, Mailbox is for you.
If you use anything other than Gmail, though, Mailbox isn't for you. At launch, the developers are pitching it as a Gmail companion. Yahoo, Hotmail, and iCloud users will initially be out of luck. The developers are, however, promising more email providers down the road.
The right stuff?
Mailbox adds other essential capabilities, like multiple accounts, and (unlike Sparrow) push notifications. The iPhone app is in closed beta now, and is coming to the App Store "in the New Year."
Will Mailbox be a game-changer? Or is it just a gimmicky facelift on the same old email? Let us know in the comments, and check out the promo vid below.