Ok, so that’s a tongue-and-cheek title, but let’s face it, it’s hard to miss the irony, that while we all love the richer Gmail functionality we’re getting almost weekly by the continuous Labs releases, these same features – widgets –whatnots inevitably slow the system down, and this slowness is now remedied by yet-another Labs feature: Inbox Preview.
It’s basically a text box that quickly shows the titles of your ten newest inbox items while the rest of the system is loading. On a fast connection this is just a quick flash (remember subliminal ads? ), but on slower connections (dialup, anyone?) it’s quite noticable. Gives you a chance to get excited before the email system loads – but you can’t act on it.
The reason I won’t be turning this feature on is that I already have it, plus more in the excellent Firefox add-on Gmail Manager. A quick right click on the status bar allows me to see all my gmail accounts, number of new messages..etc, and a smooth mouse-over brings a pop-up with the details of my new email items, just like Inbox Preview does. Ok, I admit, the image on the right shows another thing: that I am in constant email-bankruptcy.
So in short, Inbox Preview is Gmail Manager sans the folder or multi-account handling.