Previously a mobile-exclusive app for iOS and Android, Mailbox works by turning the e-mail inbox into a more efficient to-do list, letting you swipe them into various folders to stay organized or "snooze" them to deal with later.
Purchased by Dropbox in May 2013, the company is transitioning the mobile service onto desktop devices in a beta version. For now, downloading Mailbox requires what's known as a "betacoin," which are being sent to select users as an invitation to download Mailbox for Mac.
The desktop version functions similarly to the mobile app: you sort e-mails by swiping on your computer's track pad and there's a button that lets you choose e-mails to "snooze," meaning they appear later at the top of your inbox.
A new feature available on the desktop version will be Drafts. Available soon for Mailbox on iOS and Android, the Drafts feature saves e-mails to whatever device you happen to be working on and, in addition, they're "automatically synced across devices when you’re signed in with your Dropbox." Mailbox's Drafts will let users continually add to an e-mail draft and work on it, so that it's "almost like a collaborative doc in your Dropbox," Mailbox's Liz Armistead told Mashable.
As compared with an e-mail service like Gmail, which typically shows around 20 e-mails in a user's inbox at a time, Mailbox's desktop service show's only around nine or 10, with the aim being to turn e-mails into icons to act on as opposed to reminders for things to do that don't actually get done. The goal seems to be to either get users to respond to e-mails in the moment or to categorize them and know where they are to deal with them efficiently at a later date.
"We wanted those emails to feel grabable and moveable," Mailbox lead designer Tony DeVincenzi told Wired.
Mailbox released a demonstration of Mailbox for Mac in April. Since then, the company says it's been "inundated with requests for access." Now, those who put their names on the wait list will receive an e-mail in the coming weeks that contains a betacoin as an attachment.