Technologizer

Windows 8 Needs More Apps Like TouchMail

A clever e-mail program shows off Microsoft's new operating system to good advantage.

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Opinion on Windows 8 may be all over the map, but here’s one thing we all should be able to agree on: the more apps that take full advantage of the Windows 8 interface, the better shape the operating system will be in. What it needs, and hasn’t had, is a profusion of killer apps.

At yesterday’s DEMO Mobile conference in San Francisco, I saw one of the first third-party Windows 8 programs that got me excited: TouchMail. As its name indicates, it’s an e-mail client designed for touch input.

More important, though, it’s an e-mail client that feels like it was born to work well on Windows 8. For instance, instead of a conventional inbox, you get tiles which show incoming messages and provide a longer-than usual snippet of text. (They can be color-coded, so you can spot messages from your boss or your spouse.) You can zoom out to see more and more messages; if you go far enough, the tiles turn into icons representing the messages’ senders, and you can quickly slide back to a particular day, week or month.

TouchMail looks like it could be a super-efficient way to blast through vast quantities of mail; its creators say it’s designed for folks who get at least a hundred messages a day. It’s a little premature to judge it, though: the version which is live on the Windows Store is a teaser rather thank a working e-mail program. In fact, you can’t use it to get your own mail yet, only to view some sample messages.

At DEMO, TouchMail’s creators got questioned by a doubtful judge about why they chose to launch on Windows rather than other platforms. (I understood his reasoning, but I was still startled — even five years ago, I can’t imagine anyone thinking that Windows wasn’t the by far the most obvious operating system to launch a new product on.) It turns out that they do intend to bring their creation to other devices, beginning with the one I use most, the iPad.

I’m happy to hear that — but I’ll also be tickled if TouchMail turns out good enough that it helps sell a still-skeptical planet on the value of Windows 8.

3 comments
heatherR
heatherR

I was at DEMO and this was one of the cooler apps presented. It looks really innovative; tried out the preview at the Windows store and am looking forward to future updates. 

Anees
Anees

anyone interested in this article, should follow Fantoo.. they are working on email solution, which is disruptive & touch base...

AdrielD.Mingo
AdrielD.Mingo

Looks pretty great and the concept is pretty innovative. Need more Win 8 devs to think outside of the (in)box.