This morning in the wee hours we released Web Mail 5.16. This release has two main changes:
- We moved the ad banner to a position that improves the usability of Web Mail. Instead of being across the top of the screen as it has been up until now, we moved it to a vertical location down the right margin. This allows your Inbox to start at the top of the page and reclaim that vertical space. We also made sure that the Inbox view (and every other view) has a minimum width that the banner must be outside of, so that users with a small display resolution like 800x600 will have at least the same amount of usable horizontal space as they did before, but now their content isn't pushed down off the page vertically. We still have about 15% of our users running 800x600 display sizes, so this should be a very welcome change for those users especially. And we believe all users will benefit from the change regardless of display size.
Yes I know many users would love to see the ads go away completely (see the FAQ), but this change helps make them less intrusive for most users.
- The "Sign-Out" link will now log you out of Web Mail just like always, but then load your myEarthLink page automatically, instead of going back to the Web Mail login page. I don't think many users got a benefit from going back to the login page, other than a visual confirmation that you had signed out. Now you'll get your customized myEarthLink page automatically after you're logged out, and you can use the handy Email Preview there to see when you have new messages and click back over to Web Mail. And if you are one who simply closes the browser when finished with Web Mail, that will still log you out too, just like it always has.
We're following this release immediately with final testing on some very important bug fixes that we're all looking forward to, and those should go out within 2-3 weeks. That build fixes the forwarding of attachments (and as a related bonus I'm told this also fixes some other troublesome MIME types that haven't worked quite right), fixes the spell-checker problem, fixes some issues with the Address Book import, and has some other welcome improvements. I'll provide a full list when we do the release.
I'll be posting an update soon on our new Web Mail 6.0 progress too, which includes many improvements throughout the application. You can see the early preview that I posted a couple of months ago in the Plans section. My next update will give some more detail for your feedback.