My place on the Mailbox line as I start this entry: 318,822 (12,690 people behind me).
There’s a new email app for iOS that’s all the rage today on the Twitters and Interwebs. It’s called, simply, Mailbox. I’ve been a happy enough user of Google’s own Gmail app for some time, mostly because I don’t like the built in iOS Mail app. But there are some things that annoy me about me. For example, they got rid of the convenient “next message” button in the latest version. Now I have to go back to my inbox to see the next email (unless I’m missing something). Why? Even with all the bells and whistles I could ask for, however, very little is likely to change a cardinal fact of my life: I hate email. It was exciting in the 80s, but now it’s just drudgery.
The developers behind Mailbox apparently want to make sorting through your email a pleasurable experience! An interview with them at The Verge offers details:
“What are people trying to do with email? What are the goals?” They started with Apple’s Mail app for iPhone, which people were already familiar with, and injected elements of to-do apps he liked, since increasingly people are using their inboxes as to-do lists. The point was to create an experience that was distinctly mobile — an app that would let you take meaningful action while you’re in line at Starbucks.
Mailbox needed to intelligently display emails so you can parse and deal with them as quickly as possible. Most email apps require two or three taps to archive an email — perhaps the most common action you take on emails while you’re mobile — but Mailbox only requires one: a swipe to the side. “Our biggest a-ha moment was when we realized that the primary use case of email on the phone is triage,” Underwood says. Mailbox takes the reality of people using their inboxes as to-do lists and and builds on what Mail and Sparrow did right (push notifications and nicely threaded messages, respectively).
Triage. Perfect word. I hope they can deliver. Cult of Mac thinks they do:
How well does it work? So well that we’re comfortable saying that if you get any volume of email, Mailbox is worth throwing any other iOS email client in the trash.
I won’t know until I’m allowed to try it out for myself. I should have signed up as soon as I saw the first tweet about it.
Current place in line: 318,816 (17,500 people behind me)