RIP, Mailbox. Hello, N1

almost 6 years ago from , Product Designer at Facebook Messenger


Since Mailbox has been gutted and canned by Dropbox, I've been on a search for new email clients. Currently, I'm trying out N1 by Nylas. So far, it's been light, clever, and beautiful.

Pros: - Easy, modern onboarding - Light/Dark Toggling - Good user-interface, aesthetically. - Integrates Gmail shortcuts. - Open source - View toggles for customization - Plugin friendly - Customizable Shortcuts

Cons: - Takes a bit of time to load, initially. - Requires toggling between emails, instead of having a centralized mailbox, with "by-email" filters. - No "Later" filter, like on Mailbox. This helps a lot for Inbox Zero/Using your inbox as a To-Do list.


  • Mark Michon, almost 6 years ago

    They have pretty different audiences. As it stands N1 is closer to apple mail than it is Mailbox. It's an interesting project to watch, but Airmail (or even Google Inbox) is still probably a better alternative for mailbox users.

    9 points
    • Jonathan SimcoeJonathan Simcoe, almost 6 years ago

      I've been using N1 on an off for a month. They have had some major bugs. The calendar one recently was sending 100s of calendar auto-replies to people that sent me Google calendar invites.

      I've moved back to Sparrow and I couldn't be happier. It's amazing that an app that hasn't been updated in probably 4 years is still relevant, has a simple UI and it faster than any other mail client I've ever used.

      3 points
    • Yasen DimovYasen Dimov, almost 6 years ago

      I think we already covered that, but yes, I do agree, either Airmail or Inbox... too bad there isn't an Inbox app yet...

      1 point
  • Weston VierreggerWeston Vierregger, almost 6 years ago

    The UI looks awesome, but isn't the entire Chromium package required for this app? I think I remember that from the last time this was posted up. That makes N1 weigh in at over 100MB, right?

    3 points
  • Matt Dean, almost 6 years ago

    Google Inbox has all that I need.

    2 points
    • Alice Chuang, almost 6 years ago

      I like Inbox, and the team behind it, but I still need a desktop app for my needs. I don't think there's an Inbox one!

      0 points
    • Michael Nino EvensenMichael Nino Evensen, almost 6 years ago

      I love Google Inbox too. Gestures, features and just how the mails are stacked, grouped is great. In terms of having a desktop app I definitely see this, it would though almost be as easy as just wrapping Inbox in something like Github Electron (like what Slack does).

      0 points
  • Tony GinesTony Gines, almost 6 years ago

    Yeah, I was excited about this one until I realized it didn't have a unified inbox. Once they have that, I'll check it out again.

    2 points
  • Bill Columbia, almost 6 years ago (edited almost 6 years ago )

    Would have moved to this a while ago if I didn't have to run a VM to handle my email. GUI looks great, not sold on sending my work mail through a 3rd party though as the alternative to the VM!

    2 points
  • David SimpsonDavid Simpson, almost 6 years ago

    Unibox has a new iOS app they are releasing this week. Good timing on their part. The key thing for me is having a cohesive email experience across two macs and two iOS devices and Mailbox was the best fit for that. Depending on how Unibox works out i'll probably fall back to Apple Mail or Sparrow...

    1 point
  • Trevor CurtisTrevor Curtis, almost 6 years ago

    I love this app, but wasn't impressed with how resource intensive it is (being built on chromium/electron). Massive download size, uses tons of ram, fairly excessive energy usage for a mail app.

    Chromium is great for something like Atom where heavy user customization is inevitable, but I'm not convinced it makes sense for a mail client. A leaner native experience like Sparrow/Airmail/etc seems a better fit.

    1 point
  • Eytan DavidovitsEytan Davidovits, almost 6 years ago

    I don't understand the shutdown of mailbox and carousel. Was it obvious?

    1 point
    • David SimpsonDavid Simpson, almost 6 years ago

      Carousel was dumb from the beginning and a waste of time and money. Mailbox on the other hand was actually a good and useful product.

      2 points
  • Chris Howard, almost 6 years ago (edited almost 6 years ago )

    I looked at N1 but it talked about sending all my mail thru its server. Which makes me nervous about reliability and maybe security.

    From the FAQ:

    "Why doesn’t this connect directly via IMAP & SMTP?

    One of the key reasons we were able to develop this app quickly was that it uses the Nylas Platform APIs, powered by our open source sync engine. This moves the complexity of mailsync to the server infrastructure."

    Or have I misunderstood that?

    0 points
  • Alex MontagueAlex Montague, almost 6 years ago

    N1 wouldn't log in to my Outlook account. Goodbye, N1.

    Cool design, though. Has potential for sure.

    0 points
  • T. F., almost 6 years ago

    You got me with "Light/Dark Toggling" =)

    0 points
  • Ollie MonkOllie Monk, almost 6 years ago

    A bug I came across when using Nylas was that quitting the app then opening it up again would reset all my accounts and I'd have to create them for the app again. Not a huge problem but not the most convenient!

    0 points
  • Mehmet FidanboyluMehmet Fidanboylu, almost 6 years ago

    N1 is nice, but as others have said it's not on the same level as Mailbox yet in terms of snoozing. I say yet because snoozing and swipe gestures are on their roadmap. I've been beta testing for a few weeks and it's feeling a lot more like a genuine alternative now that they've included things like signature support.

    Spark by Readdle is shaping up nicely on the iPhone. I'm looking forward to beta testing their iPad app this week, and they're apparently planning an OS X app for early next year. If they translate the experience across platforms well it should (in my opinion) overtake Airmail as the best app.

    Airmail on the other hand seem to be going the other way and are working on an iOS app that's in beta. I would love for them to have a Snooze feature built in, but I don't think it's planned for the time being.

    I'm currently also testing Polymail. First impressions after a couple of days are positive. It's unfinished (as you'd expect for a pre-launch app), but what I've seen so far is great. Needs IMAP +/- Exchange support to be taken seriously IMO.

    0 points
  • Michael Reich, almost 6 years ago

    I tried it yesterday! Super awesome! :D

    0 points
  • Calum SmithCalum Smith, almost 6 years ago

    I’ve got to agree with The Sweet Setup on this so far—Airmail has been the best of all the desktop apps I’ve been trying lately. On iPhone, I just picked up Readdle’s Spark, which I'm liking quite a bit. Both do customizeable swiping gestures, unified inboxes, and proper Send From support for Gmail, as well as looking nice.

    0 points