Ever increasing dependency on technology and the internet is making it more and more difficult to keep track of things in an organized manner. If you’re an active internet and social networking community member, chances are that you’ll be jumping from one platform to another all the time, checking emails, Facebook, Twitter, and what not. Won’t it be nice to have everything delivered to you in one place, without the hassle?
Many applications these days are adopting this very approach. Microsoft in their Office 2010 suite of applications have also tried to incorporate this in some manner. Then there are dedicated programs that serve only this process: email and social network integration. From this class stands out Inbox2, a ‘premium connected lifestyle application’ as per its developer, that combines all (and I mean literally all) your email in one beautiful interface as well as displaying live streams from Facebook, Twitter, Yammer etc.
The most catchy thing about Inbox2 is its elegance and beauty. It is one of the most aesthetically pleasing programs that I have ever seen. The color scheme is well implemented, and it sports a fair amount of well-executed animations.
Moving on from interface, you need to setup at least one account to begin using the program. Many pre-configured options are already here, otherwise you can set up any email account supporting IMAP/POP if you know the settings.
One the main program interface, you have the option to view all your accounts at the same time or have content displayed from only one at a time. For ease of use, Inbox2 downloads last 50 messages from each account initially, although you can choose to manually override that and grab all messages. The right side of the screen displays your real-time streams like Twitter, Facebook etc.
A very interesting and useful feature is the Contacts tab. It displays all contacts from all of your configured accounts. Selecting one contact would display everything related to that contact in different panes, including messages from that contact, any documents they may have sent, their status updates, and well as general information.
Two other tabs are also present, which show only the attached documents and photos respectively from all your configured accounts. The photos are displayed as decently-sized previews, so that’s also convenient.
On the downside, and one that alone could be a killer point for this otherwise brilliant software, is that it is a huge memory hog. With four accounts configured and real-time stream working, my system reported a memory usage of over 200MB! It seems the developer found it hard to make the program look so good and not eat up system resources at the same time. Indeed, because of this high RAM usage, it may not be usable for quite a few people out there with low-end PCs.
All in all, setting aside the memory issue I found Inbox2 a wonderful piece of software, something I would definitely be keeping an eye on in future. The software is good at what it does, looks nice and overall is impressive. We just hope that their next release somehow manages to fix the memory usage problem, and I would certainly give it a high score.
We tested Inbox2 on Windows 7 x86 with 2GB of physical memory. Let us know through comments how your experience was with Inbox2.