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Love It Or Hate It, Hop Has Taken A Noteworthy Stab At Reinventing Email

October 18, 2013

In the past, we have seen many great apps that try to reinvent or make managing email much easier. Hop – Your email. Reimagined. (Free) by Hopflow takes an even larger leap in this category of apps, as it tries to turn email into casual messaging. The main question to be asked here is whether or not we want to use email in this way.

Before hopping over to Hop, I was a Mailbox user ever since I made it to the front of their queue. I love the idea of being able to get to “Inbox Zero” so easily by clearing my inbox of the junk that I cannot address until a later time.

While Mailbox will always hold a special place in my heart, Hop is different. You must also wait in a queue to access it, but once you make it through, prepare for some shock.

Hop does not have an inbox. There are no folders, labels, compose windows, trash cans, junk folders, or any of the like that we usually associate with email. Yet, despite the absence of what are usually considered to be the bare bones of an email client, Hop still does email. Really well, in fact.

Instead of focusing on those locations, Hop focuses on two things: “Chats” and “Incoming Mail.” Chats are threads of email, which are displayed like IM conversations, while Incoming Mail is the category associated with one-way messages like newsletters. In a way, this eliminates the chore of replying to email in the typical “Dear Recipient, … Sincerely, Sender” fashion, as well as omitting the need for a subject.

If the individual whom you are chatting with is also a Hop user, you will be able to see when they are typing and if your messages have been delivered to them.

For more of the finer details about Hop, along with a promo video, be sure to check out Bryan’s other articles leading up to the release of what was formerly known as Ping.

For a typical user who treats their inbox like the only folder in existence, using email to receive one-way messages or have casual conversations, Hop is so ideal. It makes email light, fun, and instant, with push notifications to boot.

However, Hop may bring about an unpleasant feeling for even the simplest power users like myself, who are used to traditional email. Although I don’t use folders or labels in my email workflow, I am disappointed that Hop doesn’t even recognize the most basic components of email hierarchy. It was quite alarming when all of my conversations showed up in the Chats and Incoming Mail tabs although they had been archived. While threads of messages can be checked off, which will hide them, they cannot be deleted or archived, which means that your mail account may appear to be messy if viewed from another location. The fact that support for multiple mail accounts is nowhere to be found may also be a dealbreaker.

Regardless of how you use email, it’s time for you to at least give Hop a try to see if it’s a good fit for you. After downloading it in the App Store on your iPhone for free, be sure to comment below with your thoughts.

Mentioned apps