"Email, redesigned for the 21st century"
Inbox by Google may not revolutionize email like it purported to upon launch, but it definitely includes a heap of really cool features you'll find yourself wondering how you ever lived without. The ability to "snooze" emails until you want to deal with them later is invaluable, and the way it intelligently crawls your messages for the most important information (like flight times and appointments) to bring it right to the forefront is a huge timesaver. You can also "undo" sending a message right after you've hit the button, which is totally perfect for those of us who tend to feel immediate regret of missed typos. As of a few months ago, Inbox is open to the general public, and it's also now available for firstname.lastname@example.org addresses - so why not give it a try on your personal or work account and see if you like the new feel?
Integration with Keep, Eat24, and Hotel Tonight make it easier than ever to accomplish all your to-dos right from your inbox. The material design is smooth and gorgeous, head and shoulders above most email clients.
There's definitely a learning curve to using Inbox, given that we've all gotten so used to a standard email client for so many years. Trying to navigate all the different spaces in the app can get confusing on a small screen.
Original review from Oct 28, 2014:
Gmail's newest email organization app is called Inbox, and its goal is to automatically sort your message so that you have what's important when and where you need it.
Inbox uses Bundles to put messages of a similar type together in one place, like emails about finance or travel. Highlights show the most important information from within a message right on your general feed, so you don't have to open entire emails just to see key info like shipping information and photos from friends. Because most emails require some kind of task, a reminder function is built right into the app, letting you create alerts for yourself so you never forget to book that appointment again. Finally, a Snooze feature lets you postpone having to deal with messages until later, whether that's in a couple hours, when you get home, or next week entirely.
Right now, Inbox is invite only (request yours by sending a message to email@example.com), and will only work with @gmail.com email addresses.
The idea behind Inbox is great. Emails often overwhelm us, making us feel like we never manage to get everything done, and we need a better tool to organize the influx of information. However, I found the interface actually confusing and rather difficult to navigate on a small screen (the expansive companion web app was much easier). It's also unnecessarily tricky to delete emails - swiping can snooze them or archive them, but you have to pass through several menus to delete.
Regardless, if you're interested in trying a new way to organize your emails, Inbox is definitely worth a shot. It's from Google, so it'll surely come with slick updates over the course of the coming months.
Original score: 7.0/10