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Google's New E-mail Service

I suspect most of you heard about Google's new e-mail service, Gmail, that was announced last week. The major new feature is that they will give you one gigabyte of free storage, which is enough to store most all of your e-mail for a number of years if you don't have large attachments.

Gmail makes it easy to re-trace the steps in an e-mail exchange: say you need to remember a few action items sent by e-mail from the boss. Once you find the one of the e-mail messages that is part of that exchange, Gmail displays it with related messages in the window. Gmail calls these exchanges "conversations." And clicking on one expands it so that more than one relevant message is displayed at a time. A link at the right of the screen says "expand all," and it expands all the messages that are part of a conversation.

Of course Google is famous for searching so finding those messages is far easier and faster than with any other e-mail program or service we've ever experienced. A search field at the top of screen lets you search for practically any word that may appear in any part of the e-mail, including the subject, the name of the sender or what may be in the body of the message. If there's one thing Google does well, it's search. The link is the first full review of this service.

Fortune April 12, 2004

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