Mailbox Comes To Android, But Is It Good Enough To Replace Gmail?

Mihir Patkar 25-04-2014

Since its launch, Mailbox has been one of the hottest iPhone apps The Best New iOS Apps of 2015 (And Our Favorite Updates) We've sorted through the stream of new apps that arrived in 2015 and devised a list of our favourites just for you. Read More —it was so popular that Dropbox bought it. Well, it’s now finally hit Android. Can it also become one of the best Android apps The Best Android Apps on the Google Play Store for 2019 Looking for the best Android apps for your phone or tablet? Here's our comprehensive list of the best apps for Android. Read More ?


It’s a free app and not much has changed from the iOS version. There are a few additions, of course. Mailbox now requires you to have a Dropbox account or create a new one before you start using it. Plus there’s a new intelligent feature called Auto-Swipes, but we’ll come to that later. But more or less, it’s what we saw already on the iPhone app.


A Quick Recap

Bakari has covered Mailbox for iPhone in detail Take Your Inbox Box To Zero With Mailbox For The iPhone The default Mail client for the iPhone has become in my opinion outdated, or it's certainly not as advanced as the hardware it resides in. Mail is not fun to navigate, and its latest features... Read More , but if you are new to it, here is a quick recap. Mailbox asks you to add your Gmail or iCloud account (it doesn’t work with any other email service right now) and supports multiple accounts. When you have that ready, the app will fetch emails from your inbox.

Mailbox’s selling point lies in its ability to organize your inbox and turn it into a task list. There are a few swipe-based actions for this. In the default “mailbox” view, you get:



If you are already in the “Snooze” box, swiping right will halfway take it back to mailbox and swiping right fully archives it. Similarly, if you’re in the “Archive” box, swiping left halfway will take it to mailbox and swiping left fully will snooze the message.

All of these actions can also be performed if you open an email, listed as icons at the top. At the bottom are the usual options to reply, reply-all or forward.

Lists & Auto-Swipes

Lists are an important part of Mailbox and act as folders. You can create your own list in the app’s settings.



Settings also include Auto-Swipes, the smart new feature in Mailbox. Mailbox tracks your interactions on certain similar types of emails and suggests creating smart rules for them. For example, if you archive a message from a certain address often, Auto-Swipe will suggest that as a rule. In my test, this happened five times, out of which one was wrong, one was fantastic and I hadn’t realised it, while the other three were nice additions to make my email management easier. It still makes mistakes, but they aren’t common enough to call the feature a failure. Just make sure you see what you are allowing Mailbox to do and it will smartly manage your inbox.

You can also manually set these rules. On any open message, long-press one of the aforementioned icons and you’ll get a prompt to set up a rule using the sender, the recipient or the subject line.

Dropbox Integration & Attachment Failure

As already mentioned, you need a Dropbox account to use Mailbox now and it’s no surprise then that it’s tightly integrated with the cloud storage service. And you don’t even need the original app installed, you can have one of the fantastic Dropbox alternatives for Android Better Than The Default: 5 Fantastic Dropbox Apps [Android] I'm a huge fan of Dropbox. I have been using it extensively for team collaborations, to transfer files between platforms, and for backup purposes. Dropbox' key to success is its ease of use, which is... Read More .



But while it’s great to attach a file from your Dropbox or photo gallery into Mailbox, that’s where it ends. You see, apart from that, there is no other way to attach any file to an email.

The attachment experience is even worse on a received mail. I have no idea how to download an attached file to my phone’s memory, let alone batch-download multiple attachments. These core email experience features are taken for granted on Gmail, but are missing on Mailbox and there’s a huge void because of that.

Mailbox Is A Manager, Not A Replacement

The more I use it, the more I realise that Mailbox is a fantastic tool to sort my Gmail inbox; but it’s not going to replace Gmail for me. To go through my inbox, Mailbox does a fantastic job of setting up rules and understanding my needs smartly. But in email search and composing mails, two features I use often, Mailbox still lags behind.

If your inbox runneth over, grab Mailbox and start setting up rules. You’ll be thankful you did. But Gmail still deserves a place in your Android phone.


Download: Mailbox for Android (Free) [No longer available]

Related topics: Email Tips, Gmail.

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  1. Rajaa C
    April 29, 2014 at 12:31 am

    I personally love SolMail. Very beautiful interface with clean feature.

    PlayStore Link : [NO LONGER AVAILABLE]

    Video Link :

  2. Peter
    April 26, 2014 at 1:55 pm

    A shame that I cannot find it using the Play store app, search keys"Mailbox"and "Drop box". Helpful suggestions welcome.

  3. legituser
    April 26, 2014 at 8:11 am

    I wish gmail would have acquired them not dropbox :-/

  4. Dan
    April 25, 2014 at 2:23 pm

    I like K-9 mail :-)