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2/18/2010
05:49 AM
Eric Ogren
Eric Ogren
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Google Buys Then Deletes reMail App For iPhone

Google recently purchased a small company that offered an iPhone email search application. The app, called reMail, was superior to the iPhone's native email search tool. As soon as Google purchased the company behind reMail, the app was pulled from the iPhone Apps Store.

Google recently purchased a small company that offered an iPhone email search application. The app, called reMail, was superior to the iPhone's native email search tool. As soon as Google purchased the company behind reMail, the app was pulled from the iPhone Apps Store.Gabor Cselle got his start at Google, specifically with Google's Gmail team. He was also an engineer at Xobni, where he came up with some tools for Microsoft's Outlook email program. Eventually, he founded reMail and wrote an application, also called reMail.

ReMail is a search utility that archives the text in the user's email account. ReMail only supported one email account at a time, but it would index everything, including subject lines and body text, as far back as a user choose to. The archives were then stored locally on the iPhone, meaning iPhone users could search through their email at any time -- even when no network connection was present.

Not any more.

Google recently acquired reMail. Cselle writes in his blog, "Google and reMail have decided to discontinue reMail's iPhone application, and we have removed it from the App Store. If you already have reMail, it will continue to work. We'll even provide support for you until the end of March."

What's the big deal behind this small app's demise? It's the latest maneuver in the titanic struggle for supremacy in the mobile landscape. It simply boils down to Google versus Apple.

Hopefully Google is planning to rework the application a bit and adopt it for its Android mobile platform. That's the most obvious use to which reMail and Cselle's code can be put to use. Is that Google's intent? Neither Google nor Cselle has said.

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