Right now I’m a little confused about what Google thinks of email in general, and Gmail specifically. Just over a year ago Google launched the Inbox for Gmail app on iOS and Android, and it works on Chrome, Firefox, and Safari on Macs and PCs. As best as I can figure out, Inbox is supposed to be a more productive email, and maybe the replacement for Gmail (but that’s just a guess).
If you want Inbox now on your Mac, well, there’s an app for that.
What’s With All The Boxes?
Mac users who don’t want to muck with Gmail or Inbox on their iPhones can use Boxy, a modestly priced Mac app which, well, for lack of a better term, is Inbox on your Mac. Which uses your Gmail account. I know, right? It’s hard to keep up.
Regardless, and despite the fact that it’s still email we’re dealing with here, Boxy has a lot of features that Gmail users who haven’t switched to Inbox will find useful beyond the obvious pain of switching to something new and different.
New and different, indeed.
Boxy is packed with features you won’t find in Gmail, most Gmail apps, or Gmail in a browser window.
For example, Boxy handles multiple Gmail accounts, integrates with OS X’s Notification Center, has both a Dock icon and a Menubar icon for easy access, and features a whole bunch of Mac power user keyboard shortcuts (and, for really power Mac users, even VIM shortcuts).
Boxy has both light and dark modes to work well and play nice nice with OS X Yosemite and El Capitan. There’s a quick Reader Mode to let you focus on the message, not the controls and clutter. Attachments can be hidden from view.
What’s really useful about Boxy is the Inbox focus on Bundles, Snooze, Reminders, and other features not available in old-fashioned Gmail. As an Inbox app, I like Boxy and it’s a bit reminiscent of Google’s own Inbox app for iPhone. The interface is intuitive and obvious but with enough customization capability to adapt to your preferences.
The only real problem here is that it’s all still email. Gmail, Apple Mail, Inbox, Outlook– whatever email app you’re using, it’s still email and messages still need to be addressed the old fashioned way. One. At. A. Time.
Still, considering the nominal price tag– right on my threshold for throwaway money for an app without a free trial version– and the option to handle multiple Gmail accounts, Boxy is a good deal. But it’s still email.