Why the World Needs to be ‘Done’ with Email

Most email services let you live like an email slob. OnMail’s Done System helps clean up your act.

  • The Done System is one of OnMail’s hallmark features — allowing you to keep your inbox clean with a simple tap.
  • OnMail is rooted in the belief that the next generation of your inbox is not a view that resembles a spreadsheet full of information as it has in years past, but rather an uncluttered and far simpler email experience.
  • All messages marked as Done are still searchable and can be found in the Done folder located under the Inbox.

A few weeks ago, OnMail exited public beta and launched its iOS app debut. Our team has been overjoyed to see the response from the OnMail community, and tremendously valuable feedback from users helping us make OnMail the best email service yet.

OnMail has a lot to offer, that’s why we want to take some time to spotlight the best features of the service and explain our thought process behind their creation. Today, the focus is on OnMail’s Done System.

The Done System is one of the first improvements we envisioned adding to email when we started developing OnMail, and in many ways it’s emblematic of the simplicity we’re trying to bring back to using email. Our goal with OnMail was to create an email service that finally lets you be ‘done’ with emails, and provides a clean email service that isn’t bloated with extra features you really don’t need or use. What better way to represent that than with a feature called Done?

What is It: OnMail’s Done System is the love child between classic email features like archive, delete, and mark as read — combining the best of all three into a seamless experience. With the volume of email you receive on a daily basis, we understood the need for you to be done with certain messages the way you would for any task in life — finished with it at that moment with possibility to return to it later on.

How does it work: Marking a message as Done puts it out of sight, but keeps the option of referring back to it or retrieving again for use later on either by going through the Done folder, or by searching for the message itself in the Search bar. Information from a message you marked as Done about shopping or travel is still available for reference at a glance within your smart folders.

On your iOS devices, a single tap on an email sender’s avatar in OnMail will send the message to the Done folder. On your desktop, you can either tap the avatar or drag and drop the message into the Done folder on your sidebar. With a simple move, you’re able to mark a message as read and catapult that message out of your inbox.

If you accidentally mark an email as Done when you’re not quite finished with it yet, never fear, the mistake is easy to undo. On your desktop you can simply drag and drop it back into your Inbox, or select the message and tap Move to Inbox on the bottom of your screen. On your iOS devices, you can either tap the Undo button that appears when you mark a message as Done, or use the pull up bar to access your inbox menu, go to your Done folder, find the message you’d like to put back into your Inbox, pull from the left, and select Move to Inbox.

When to use it: The use cases for Done are numerous, but the delete button is certainly not rendered obsolete. After all, there are simply so many times when you no longer need a message in your inbox. To demonstrate the difference, here are a few different examples of how you would use Done vs. Delete.

A thread about a presentation that you killed? You’re done with the task, but it’ll be nice to reference it in the future. That message gets marked as Done.

A rejection email from a job you applied for? That one hurts, and you don’t need to keep it around. That one you can delete.

An email from your vet about your cat’s medical bills? Once you handle the expenses, you can mark it as Done so you can reference it later. After all, who needs a constant reminder that they spent $2,000 because their cat decided to eat a hair tie?

A message about a sale that you just missed? That one you can delete for good, there will be others.

Tickets to a post-pandemic concert? That you can mark as Done. You’re not done with it quite yet, but you can always find the ticket in your smart folder.

An email from an ex trying to get back together with you? Feel free to not only delete the message, but block them for good. You don’t need that kind of negativity in your life.

Why the world needs a Done System for email: Our philosophy on delivering a cleaner inbox experience in OnMail is rooted in our belief that the next generation of your inbox is not a view that resembles a spreadsheet full of information as it has in years past, but rather an uncluttered and far simpler email experience.

Unlike other email services that choose to embrace an ongoing flood of information as the norm for your inbox — something that our previous studies have demonstrated to be stress-inducing for us all — we think email can be better. To be clear, our approach was less focused on demanding inbox zero for everyone and more about treating email as our digital “home” we live in, and building a far easier way to keep the place tidy for you so it’s more pleasant to live in every day (rather than wading through stuff everywhere).

There’s a noticeable and positive feeling of accomplishment you have when you mark a message as “Done,” which we consider to be a signal that we are on the right track to creating more of a stress-free inbox. Breathing room in email — what a concept! If you, like many others, use your inbox like a task list, the vibrant green check when you mark an email as “Done” helps encourage you to continue onto the next task. Your inbox is less cluttered and you are empowered to keep moving on to what’s next.​​

This is why Done is one of our favorite OnMail features — it’s the perfect way to speed through your emails and keep your inbox and your mind clutter free.

Sign up for OnMail via webmail and download on iOS to finally be “done” with emails.

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Edison Software is a consumer technology company with a mission to create more intelligent products to serve people. www.edison.tech