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Google acquires Sparrow to bring ‘beauty’ to Gmail

Radford C. Jul 20, 2012 1

Google Acquires Sparrow

Sparrow has announced that it’s been purchased by Google for under $25 million.  Sparrow is an email client for Mac OS X and iOS. After a 4 month beta period Sparrow went on sale in the Mac App Store on 9 February 2011 and it has become the top paid and top grossing app in less than one day. Dom Leca posted on the Sparrow blog that the company has been acquired by Google, and that they’re joining the Gmail team to “accomplish a bigger vision.”

Sparrow is best known for its simplified user interface and carries similarities in look and feel with Twitter clients such as Tweetie. The paradigm contrasts greatly from traditional email styles such as Outlook, Apple’s Mail or Mozilla Thunderbird. Sources who are familiar with the matter say the acquisition was a natural since Sparrow currently works with Gmail and Google Apps accounts via IMAP. Sparrow includes features such as drag-and-drop attachments, Growl support, Gmail labels, and keyboard shortcuts,  as well as threaded replies and easy switching between accounts.

Gmail has had issues gaining traction on iOS and naturally lacks features than its Android version. Sparrow saw the opportunity to support multiple accounts, which  opened up a space that the Sparrow team took advantage with its iOS app.

No bidding war surrounded the purchase. Reports from multiple outlets site the Paris-based Sparrow team to migrate to Google’s main Mountain View campus in California.

In an email to Sparrow users, CEO Dom Leca explained that Sparrow products won’t be receiving new features. It’s also likely we’ll see the next update of the app not carrying the Sparrow logo. At the moment, the Sparrow iOS and Mac apps will continue to be available from Apple’s App Stores.

From Sparrow Blog:

We’re excited to announce that Sparrow has been acquired by Google!

We care a lot about how people communicate, and we did our best to provide you with the most intuitive and pleasurable mailing experience.
Now we’re joining the Gmail team to accomplish a bigger vision — one that we think we can better achieve with Google.
We’d like to extend a special thanks to all of our users who have supported us, advised us, given us priceless feedback and allowed us to build a better mail application. While we’ll be working on new things at Google, we will continue to make Sparrow available and provide support for our users.
We had an amazing ride and can’t thank you enough.
Full speed ahead!

Dom Leca

We also want to thank our advisors and investors — Loren Brichter, Dave Morin, John Maeda, Xavier Niel, Jérémie Berrebi — as well as our friends and family: Simon Istolainen, Jérémie Kanza, Sacha Cayre, Cedric Gepner, Laurent Merlinot, Didier Kuhn, Tariq Krim, Christophe Baillon, Laurent Cerveau, Christophe Giaume, Sebastien Maury, Manuel Colom, Bertrand Guiheneuf and all of you who have helped us along the way.

Via »Sparrow Blog