Sparrow: A new Gmail client for OS X

OS X users, we haven’t abandoned you. We actually spend a lot of time trying to find interesting OS X applications, but lately it just seems like there’s more iOS to talk about than OS X. C’est La Vie.

We stumbled on Sparrow today, and thought we would pass it on to you guys. Sparrow is a Mail client for OS X, limited to Gmail currently, but it has huge potential. In my recent quest to eliminate cluttered applications around my main desktop, Sparrow comes along at the perfect time.

What’s Macgasmic

The Sparrow approach to mail feels and a lot like a Twitter client, it’s great. It has a small footprint, and clearly defined labels. It encourages getting things done in a way that I like, simply and efficiently. Sparrow isn’t your typical mail client, and instead acts more like a twitter timeline than it does an email, letting you keep track of incoming emails and getting a response off quickly.

The application has support for email threads, growl notifications, and multiple email accounts, so long as they’re of the Gmail variety.

The application isn’t quite ready for heavy lifting yet, but it makes a nice personal email client, especially if you’re sick of Mail.app

What needs work

Address Book Integration, while the application is pretty smart, it seems to be taking email addresses previously used in Gmail instead of petitioning the Address Book application. It’s just a hunch, but it certainly feels that way, and as it stands, there’s no support for contact groups because of this, so if you’re big on email groups or run an organization of any kind, you might want to wait until they integrate the functionality before making the switch.

More features for the Menu Bar Item. The menubar icon acts as an email notification system, letting you know just how many emails you have unread. The menubar icon also lets you open and close the main mail application window, but for some reason it forgets the email composition window when you click on it. It would also be awesome if some of the app functions would fine their way into the menubar. If I could launch a new email from the menubar, it would be a huge plus.

The Delete Key should delete emails, it currently does not. Instead, you have to click on the delete email button over and over again. As someone who doesn’t like having to remove my fingers from my keyboard, I’d love to see the delete key actually delete emails.

Update: We’ve been informed that you can delete emails by holding the CMD key and hitting the delete button.

Final Thought

Sparrow is in public beta, so we were expecting the application to be a little bit buggy here and there. Hopefully, the kinks get worked out before the application fully launches, we’d love to see a legitimate competitor in this landscape, Mail.app is getting a little bit long in the tooth.

You can check out Sparrow on their website.

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