Why would anyone want to use Gmail?
:tuxman - talk about obvious.
flamebait anyone? :-))
OK, I'm game. Why would they?
I have never seen or compiled a list of the functional needs of Gmail users - neither mine nor anyone else's.
If we were to try to formulate a serious response to @tuxman's apparently rhetorical and provocative tongue-in-cheek question, then this could become a useful email requirements-gathering question.
Well, I started using Gmail because I was given an invite by my son, and I thought I'd give it a trial "suck-and-see".
Previously, I was a confirmed email-client user, and thought web-based email was for the birds.
I had originally started with email by POPping my email from my ISP email account, using the FREE Pegasus email client. I later migrated to InfoSelect (a very good PIM) which had an integrated email client and thus enabled me to use emails as data/information
in my database - which was a primary and previously unmet requirement of mine.
However, I was initially reluctant to use Gmail - mainly because of a strong dislike of what always seemed to be deliberately crippled and/or locked-in web-based email products (e.g., Yahoo email), and my skepticism regarding email services provided or operated on a basis of demographic market data collection principles. I knew they probably "had designs" on my data and wanted to read through it all. Gmail seemed to me to be potentially like a worse-than-Hotmail
Yet, by the end of my trial, Gmail had turned out to be the best for my purposes - you really could
use the emails more like data/information - but what won me over over and made me a Google fan as well as a Gmail fan was Google's apparent openness and the progressive additional products/services that Google kept introducing. Some of them were seriously useful, some seemed pretty useless and destined to be consigned to oblivion, but at least the seriously useful
bits were great.For example:
- Gmail itself - seriously useful, though still a bit clunky; has been continuously improved.
- the Gmail Labs - mostly seriously useful, but now mostly emasculated and/or shut down.
- Google Docs/Drive - seriously useful, competitive, and farsighted, though still a bit clunky/constipated; has been continuously improved.
- Google Reader - seriously useful; has had some improvements, but is now to be shut down.
- Google Groups - seriously useful, though still a bit clunky; has been continuously improved.
- Google Picasa - seriously useful Client and Web-app; has had many improvements, but now seems likely to be shut down or forced into the unwanted product g+, thus forcing users with it.
Now though, Google seem to be doing everything they can to try and drive me away from using the Google services I like and trust - and the thing is, I won't be the only
user affected this way. If Google continue as they are doing, then they will discover what it means to inadvertently seriously piss off a large part of your user base
. People will simply vote with their feet.
For example, for well over a year, I already no longer had much trust in Google - I can't afford to trust them - and rather than use the products/services I like more
, I have for about a year had serious misgivings about Google's direction, and have been limiting
my use - holding back, waiting to see what the next product/service will be that Google will decide to unilaterally kill off without a by-your-leave.
"By their fruits ye shall know them."
- actions generally really do
speak louder than words.
So, speaking of actions, well, Google have just gone and killed off the Most Excellent Google Reader
- which is in my list of seriously useful stuff, above. Only an idiot would wait for another sign, and I am walking away from them. Just as I would not be gullible enough to sign up for a crappy Yahoo email account and all that is implied by that, I shall not
remain dependent for any services from an unreliable and untrustworthy supplier over whom I have no control. I am taking my email and other requirements with me.
Google can **** ***.