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Google knocks Gmail offline, in a good way

Updated Dec 19th, 2018 6:13PM EST

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One of the many, many, many problems with webmail can be found right in its name – “web”. Accessing your email using a web interface can definitely be convenient as it’s accessible from any browser you happen upon. At the same time however, if your internet connection drops you’re basically left out in the cold. As opposed to local email management solutions that can store your messages on your machine such as Outlook, you have no way to view old messages and work with what you’ve got. Sure, Gmail supports POP and IMAP but at this point we think it’s safe to say that POP is dead. IMAP works well in some cases but Outlook and Gmail’s IMAP implementation never seem to get along very well thanks to the way Gmail threads conversations. Enter the aptly named new service fresh from Gmal Labs, Offline Gmail. When you enable Offline Gmail, a cache of your messages will be stored locally and will become accessible even when your internet connection drops. You can read, compose, star and do just about anything else you would normally be able to do. When your connection comes back, all of the actions you performed offline will sync with Google’s Gmail servers and you’ll be good to go. Of course you won’t be able to receive new messages while offline, but at least you won’t be left twiddling your thumbs until your cable company finally gets around to fixing your problem. Hit the Labs tab in your Gmail settings to get rolling with Offline Gmail and hit the jump for a video explanation of the service.


Zach Epstein
Zach Epstein Executive Editor

Zach Epstein has been the Executive Editor at BGR for more than 10 years. He manages BGR’s editorial team and ensures that best practices are adhered to. He also oversees the Ecommerce team and directs the daily flow of all content. Zach first joined BGR in 2007 as a Staff Writer covering business, technology, and entertainment.

His work has been quoted by countless top news organizations, and he was recently named one of the world's top 10 “power mobile influencers” by Forbes. Prior to BGR, Zach worked as an executive in marketing and business development with two private telcos.