Gmail is the subject of a love/hate relationship with a lot of people. And when Google announced Inbox by Gmail back in 2014, many of us migrated over because it was just so much better than the regular Gmail app. Unfortunately, Google decided to kill it in 2018, like it does with a lot of products. Which left a void for many users like myself.
I ended up just using the Gmail app and putting up with it. And I hated it every single day. It lacked a lot of features that Inbox by Gmail had, which made your Inbox harder to manage.
Recently, I found Spark Mail, and honestly I don’t know why it took me so long to switch over. I’ve been using Spark Mail for a little over a week and absolutely love it. So in this editorial, I’m going to explain why I opted to switch from Gmail to Spark Mail.
It’s like Inbox by Gmail, but better
What Inbox by Gmail did really well was, allow you to “Snooze” emails, schedule when emails are sent, and get notifications on specific things that it thinks are important. Spark Mail does that, and much more.
Spark Mail has what it calls the “Smart Inbox”. In this Smart Inbox, your emails are automatically sorted into different categories. There are categories for each email account you have in Spark. For instance, I have my personal Gmail, my personal iCloud (which I use for spam stuff), and then my work AndroidHeadlines email. On top of that, there are categories for notifications and newsletters. These two categories are things that you probably don’t need to be alerted about.
Further down, you’ll see your pinned emails, as well as your read emails. Which makes it easy to get to inbox zero. Something that is tough, even for me.
As for notifications, Spark Mail has carefully tuned algorithms, that will notify you about your important emails only. So that latest marketing email from LinkedIn about someone viewing your profile, won’t end up notifying you. That might not sound like a big deal, but it means that you can spend less time dealing with emails, and more time being productive.
Batch Delete is sorely needed in Gmail
Spark Mail also brings back another popular feature from Inbox by Gmail. And that is Batch Delete. Allowing you to delete multiple emails at once. You can opt to Delete or Archive emails in Notifications or Newsletters, or another category all at once. If there’s more than three, you can click on the “View all (x)” at the bottom of the list, and see everything in that category. And then delete it all.
Gmail sort of has this, with the Promotions, Social, and Forums sections, but the sorting is really bad compared to Spark Mail.
Normally, when I wake up in the morning, one of the first things that I do is check my email. I generally have around 100 emails that are unread in the morning or more. And most of those are just junk emails that I don’t care about. Spark Mail has saved me a ton of time in the morning, catching up on my Inbox. Just from the Smart Inbox and Batch Delete features.
The Calendar is inside the app
Google Calendar is great and all, but you need a separate app to really use it. Which makes it tougher to really use the calendar. I have not used a calendar for years, because of this. Even though I definitely should have been. But with Spark Mail, it’s built into the app. Whether you’re on desktop or on mobile. Making it just a tap away, instead of having to open the Google Calendar app.
Again, it’s a small thing, but it is really useful. And continues to save me time.
Other things that Inbox by Gmail introduced, Spark Mail kept
There are a few other features that Spark Mail kept from Inbox by Gmail. Including Follow up reminders, however you can adjust these to your liking, instead of just randomly being a week later.
There’s also quick replies and scheduled emails. I don’t use these as much as I probably should, but I will be using them more.
One thing that Spark Mail has that Gmail doesn’t, is templates. These are very useful for me, especially with the upcoming bombardment of Black Friday, Cyber Monday, and CES emails. I can create a template to send to everyone. Instead of having to copy/paste from another document for each email.
And Google can’t kill it!
One thing that makes it hard to really get invested in Google products is, the fact that it might get killed soon. Google has a reputation for killing its products when they don’t do well, or whenever they want. Just take a look at this Killed by Google Graveyard there are 243 products in there.
Many of us loved Inbox by Gmail, but Google still decided to kill it. But with Spark Mail, you don’t have to worry about Google killing it. Now, Google could keep your Gmail account from working in Spark Mail, but that would really piss off a lot of people, as that would cut off all email apps.
Spark Mail has already saved me hours
Like I said, I’ve only been using Spark Mail for a little over a week, but it has already saved me a ton of time. And the fact that it works on all platforms is a nice touch. Since I do use multiple platforms – Mac, iOS, Android, and Chrome – having the same experience across them all is really nice. Gmail does not offer the same experience, surprisingly.
It has also made it easier to manage my multiple Gmail accounts, and not worry about mistakenly sending a work email from my personal email, and vice-versa. Which, having multiple Gmail emails in the same account before, that happened a lot.
Not to mention the fact that the UI is way better than Gmail’s UI on any platform.
If you’re looking for a new Email client that is going to save you time, and is free, then check out Spark Mail.