Saturday, April 04, 2009

Five Years Of Gmail: What Would Gsus Do?

How time flies! Gmail is five years old already. That is ages in internet time. I was an immediate convert and an evangelist. It is more than extra space, it is different, I would rant and rave. There still are people around who have email but who are not on Gmail. I try not to judge. But I will have to admit, it's hard not to.

Begs the question, what will Gmail be like in five years? It is hard to predict. I will give the Steve Jobs answer. When asked what the iPhone will look like in five years, he said, I don't know. He said he could not have predicted five years earlier there would be maps on the iPhone, but you got maps. So it is not easy to predict what technological breakthroughs we will see over the next few years that will make new, exciting features possible.

But I do have a wish list.

(1) More Space

That was Gmail's first selling point. The least it could do is stay up with the hunger of the power users. Say if you offer 50 GB, and only 1% of your users use 10 GB or more, you still get to boast that you are offering 50 GB, right?

If the internet were to end up with a trillion websites, Google should not be complaining, right? More pages, more searches, more ads, more revenue. Gmail is the same way. More email inside that Gmail account, more ads you get to serve. So why complain?

I am especially thinking of my friend Sree here. I read his piece in Forbes earlier, and I am unhappy that Gmail has been bleeding his wallet.

(2) Two Inboxes

One for people I have emailed at least once, and one for the rest. I should not have to create a new, private email account just because I became famous, right? This arrangement would also add to Gmail's already great spam filter. I mean, if I have never emailed you before.

(3) My Gmail Should Be My Phone Number

One global phone number. I hope all the hype about Google Voice is true. There is talk Google Voice is to be integrated with Gmail. Swell.

(4) Video Mail

Video chat is great, but so is text chat. There is text chat, and there is text email. So there needs to be video mail.

(5) Social

Keep adding social elements to the service.

(6) Better Integration

I should be able to go from my Gmail account straight to my Google Reader account, and why not? Maybe there are a few other services to integrate.

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