Q&A: Could blockchain professionalize Gmail?

Florian Bersier, CEO and founder of Gmelius, talks about his new email service and how blockchain can make a difference.

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Despite the constant announcements that email is dead – or, at least, about to die – it is still the most common form of workplace communication. Now, Swiss company Gmelius, which launched in 2016, believes it has come up with a way to counteract some of email’s shortcomings and make it better.

Gmelius offers a service that overlays the various Gmail offerings. There are three pricing tiers available – from free to a full business offering – and the most professional option uses blockchain to authenticate communications. This spring, the company  also plans to introduce a new way to sign email attachments using smart contracting.

We spoke to CEO and founder, Florian Bersier, to learn more in this lightly edited Q&A.

Overall this seems like a service that professionalizes Gmail and makes it more like Outlook, would you agree?

"The motivation behind Gmelius comes from a simple and very straightforward observation; email is almost 50 years old and was never designed to meet the large and diverse set of purposes it is currently used for.

"Nevertheless, email is the most used tool in the workplace and businesses all over the world use this technology on a daily basis to handle sales, manage projects and exchange documents. We all spend on average 17 hours per week handling our emails, a US employee, in particular, can spend up to six hours in their inbox per day! There is, therefore, a significant gap or mismatch between what email is capable of and how it is used today, and this problem is independent of the email service or client.

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