This week’s AOTW (App of the week) is Dropbox’s new email service, Mailbox, which the company recently acquired.


A Screenshot From Mailbox

Email is a giant part of our life today. It’s how we communicate in the 21st century. But managing email is a painful chore, and it would be nice to an easy and stylish way to deal with our daily onslaught. Recently, Dropbox has made their own attempt by acquiring Mailbox, a much-hyped email management startup.


(Left) A picture of the waiting list. They slowed it down because too many people wanted it. (Right) Mailbox Home

Before being acquired by Dropbox, Mailbox had implemented a queueing system that kept interested users at bay for several weeks while the company gradually enabled their service for the ~400,000 customers ahead in the queue (see image above). This strategy certainly helped increase word of mouth, at the expense of annoying folks who had to wait.

Mailbox promised to help you easily clean your inbox by changing the way you interact with incoming emails. It definitely did that, as Mailbox app is quite unique. Instead of having a classic “trash” button, Mailbox presents users with an interesting way of cleaning your inbox. To delete an email, you slide the message heading to the right all the way across the email. To archive an email, all you have to do is slide 3/4 of the way to the right. Mailbox also introduced two more useful options: add to lists and save for later. Lists, as you can probably guess, adds emails to a category or list that you create. All you have to do is slide all the way to the left, then pick which list you want it to go to. But say you don’t want it to go to a list, say you want to view it later. All you have to do is slide 3/4 of the way to the left and pick the date/time you want to see it. Then, when the day comes, it automatically reappears. In fact, if you like your inbox to be completely clear, you can even do one of the actions on ALL of your emails by going the the bottom of the screen and sliding. With Mailbox, your inbox would never be cleaner.

Another new thing about Mailbox is the reply. Instead of just sending an email back to the person, Mailbox sets up a text-like format. In the text format, you can easily snap a photo and send it along with the text. And if that email is important and you want to review it later, you could use save for later, or move the email to the top of the page. This new way for using email may revolutionize your email workflow, making checking your email a 30-second, and dare I say enjoyable, thing. Unfortunately for all you Yahoo! users, Mailbox is only for Gmail right now, but they will probably fix that later on. Still, Mailbox is a great email app and definitely deserves it’s title of App Of The Week. Check back here next week for the next App Of The Week!