Gmail is a successful outcome of the 20% time philosophy, but exactly is that?
The founders of Google, Larry Page and Sergey Brin, encouraged staff to “spend 20% of their time working on what they think will most benefit Google” in their 2004 IPO letter in order to assist the business be “more creative and innovative.” As a result, this became the “20% Project.”
Paul Buchheit came up with the concept for Gmail several years before it was made public. By the beginning of 2004, the majority of employees were utilizing it to access the business’ internal email system.
On April 1, 2004, Google released a limited beta version of Gmail to the public where users can keep 1GB of data for free, which was roughly 100 times more than what was accessible at the time. Currently, the service includes 15 gigabytes of free storage that is divided between among other Google services, such as Google Drive, and Google Photos.
The user base quickly passed a million. It had 1.5 billion active users globally in 2019, making it the world’s largest email service.
|🚀 Launched||April 1, 2004|
|📍 Location||San Francisco, California|
|🧑🤝🧑 Users||1.8 billion users (2023)|