Inbox, Google's Playground For Email Innovations, Is Meeting Its End

Not everything goes well as intended, even for Google that has a huge array of world-class leading apps.

It started back in 2014 when the team behind Gmail created something unexpected: they created an email app called 'Inbox'. According to Sundar Pichai at that time, the app was "designed to focus on what really matters."

But apparently, Inbox has the same backend as Gmail, and also works with users' existing Gmail address. So more or less, Inbox is a redesigned Gmail, but ditched a decade worth of Gmail flexibility and credibility to focus on email efficiency.

And people didn't buy that; not that many people care about the Inbox app.

So here, Google considers and decides to just kill it.

According to Google's product manager Matthew Izatt in a blog post:

"Four years after launching Inbox in 2014, we've learned a lot about how to make email better-and we've taken popular Inbox experiences and added them into Gmail to help more than a billion people get more done with their emails everyday,"

"As we look to the future, we want to take a more focused approach that will help us bring the best email experience to everyone. As a result, we're planning to focus solely on Gmail and say goodbye to Inbox by Gmail at the end of March 2019."

Inbox is meant to be a mobile app and a web interface alternative to viewing Gmail accounts.

As Google described it, "Inbox is by the same people who brought you Gmail, but it's not Gmail: it's a completely different type of inbox, designed to focus on what really matters."

Over the years, Inbox has been a proving ground for features - such as Smart Compose, Nudges, and Email Snoozing - which all have found their way to Gmail. It also picked up experimental, new features like gathering emails from an event, newsletter previewing, and an unsubscribe card which would appear when users didn't click on emails for a while.

Although Inbox’s influence on Gmail has been profound, Inbox is becoming just a mirror of its bigger sibling, With Inbox overshadowed by Gmail, Google starts seeing the lesser benefits of having them both.

This is why the progress of developing Inbox was noticeably slowed, as more users were preferring the comfort of Gmail rather than the flashy and unfamiliar Inbox.