New Delhi: Popular mail service Gmail has turned 10 and has come a long way from its humble beginnings. It's lean and mean and is super-fast.
First launched in beta on April 1, 2004, Google's mail service has come a long way during the past decade, and is now one of the most attractive and useable email services of its kind. Something of a pet project within Google HQ, Gmail was a collaborative effort created by Google engineers working in their spare time.
At the time of launch the company offered 1GB of storage space which was unthinkable at that time and was way more spacious than any of its major rivals, Yahoo and Hotmail. On February 14, 2007, Google decided to share the joys of Gmail with everyone, it entered a closed beta and well.
Ten years later, Gmail has become hugely popular and an integral part of our lives. Things that have made it a hit among users are an easy to use interface, ability to easily search within the inbox, simpler contact management and navigation. The current system also allows users to be more social thanks to Google+ integration and even pay for premium services using Google Wallet.
Other interesting features of Gmail include spam filtering and message threading. Gmail was also mobile-ready from the start and worked in most browsers by default.
Gmail now has around half a billion users and its concepts are commonplace in the industry.
Although Google now claims that Gmail is now completely encrypted, there's still a long way to go towards making users feel their emails are completely secure.