In comparison to my frustrations with Windows Live Hotmail, using Gmail couldn’t be a more different and pleasurable experience. From the day I received an invite to use Google’s e-mail client, I’ve never looked back. Threaded conversations are surely one of the greatest innovations in e-mailing making it insanely easy to follow discussions. That’s not to mention Gmail’s brilliant search tool – what else would you expect from the world’s number one search engine. However, as good as Gmail is, there are also several very easy ways that you make it even better with a few add-ons and extensions. If you use Gmail regularly, you’ll get even more out of it by using one these.
Better Gmail 2 – Designed by the editor of Lifehacker, this fantastic script adds a host of useful new features to Gmail such as the ability to see how many unread messages you have in a tab, labels to categorise and file-away important e-mails and an array of keyboard commands to cut down on mouse time.
Gmail Drive – Gmail gives you an awesome amount of storage space to work with and it’s increasing all the time – approximately 1MB every 11.8 minutes in fact. It’s a travesty not to take advantage of this and use it for something more than simply storing a few e-mails which is what Gmail Drive does by adding a virtual drive to your desktop which allows you to save and retrieve files from your Gmail account as if it were a physical drive.
Gmail and Google Calendar – Along with Gmail, Google Calendar is probably one of my most used Google products and this superb script allows you to integrate Gmail with your Calendar. It embeds Google Calendar into Gmail by adding a hyperlink making it much easy to transfer important dates discussed in your e-mails to your calendar.
GSpace – This is similar to Gmail Drive in that it allows you to save and store files to your Gmail account but it also allows you to stream music and video from your account. It features four different modes – File Mode, Photo Mode, Player Mode and Gmail Drive depending on what you need to do. You can also access it from anywhere without logging into Gmail.
GmailClipseClient – Sometimes you might not be able to access your Gmail for some reason but that’s no reason to be without it. GmailClipseClient allows you to access your Gmail account if you don’t have access to POP3 or SMTP servers in an office (if you’re not allowed to access them for some reason).