Remember your first experience with Gmail? Apart from a much different user experience, what we all liked about Gmail was its spam filtering capability.
While Yahoo Mail, Hotmail were more about pushing banner ads all over your Inbox, Gmail had this awesome neat look to the service (plus storage).
Fast forward to 2011 and this is how my Inbox looked this morning (a typical morning, I’d say)
Marking an email as spam doesn’t work anymore – I have been marking the gorkhana alert US sender for the last 3-4 months and have now given up on this (reminds me of the Yahoo/Hotmail days).
Moreover, my job as a consumer is not to improve Gmail’s spam filter. This is the same ass-umption Yahoo and Hotmail lived up with (and lost out, though not in market share, but surely in mind share).
Why not use Priority Inbox? Well, given my job (of running Pluggd.in), we get a lot of anonymous email, PR etc to rely solely on Google’s algorithm to filter unimportant emails [like I said, my job is not to train any service. If it works, it works. If it doesn’t, move on*.]
Aside, a research by Fraunhofer Institute shows that Gmail users receive twice as much spam as Yahoo! Mail users.
The Fraunhofer Institute, an independent research firm, found that Yahoo! Mail users saw the least amount of spam out of the five providers tested, with nearly 40% less spam than Hotmail and 55% less spam than Gmail – meaning Gmail users in the study saw more than twice as much spam as Yahoo! Mail users.” [ymail blog]
Maybe its time to give the new Hotmail a try (after the powerful email alias feature)?
Fundamental question: is Google another Yahoo in making?
* Note to Product Startups: Do not assume that your users will do your job. Predictability of product/feature makes the cut [read: What Separates Startup Men from Poys ]. Even if 1% of your users do help you with your job, show them an instant gratification [Tell me Google, will you please block that gorkhana email from tomorrow?]