MAKE GMAIL BETTER?
Gmail is popular for both personal and professional use, and we haven’t found a genuine contender that we would recommend in its place. But we have found something that arguably improves it, turning it into a more modern communication tool.
Email remains indispensable, but collaboration services such as Slack and Microsoft Teams are definitely nibbling away at the edges, replacing much of the communications trac that used to end up on emails cc’ed around the oce.
Redkix (redkix.com) aims to deliver the best of both worlds – if not entirely successfully. You log in with your work email account (it supports Gmail, Oce 365 and Exchange) and are presented with an interface that will look instantly familiar to users of Slack or Teams.
You can access your inbox and calendar as normal using the relevant links, but the interesting stu happens down below. Colleagues can be cobbled together into Groups and then sent a message – the equivalent of cc’ing them in – but the crucial part is that they don’t have to have signed up for Redkix to respond. They just see it as an email arriving from you and can reply back from their regular inbox. You see the replies arriving as a threaded conversation in Redkix. The same applies to direct messages sent to a single person.
Where it starts to fall down is when those colleagues are sent a group email and can’t see who else is in the group without clicking a discreet link at the foot of the message. The other respondents aren’t included in the To or CC fields, but do get to see the reply. We can see that leading to all sorts of inadvertent faux pas, when someone replies to an email sent apparently from only you and ends up replying to the group instead.
Redkix will appeal to those who hate dealing with a regular email inbox and are born Slackers; just beware of its potential perils for oce politics.