I have about 3% of my email now going to my Gmail account, and in four months of use I have filled about one-sixth of my Gmail quota (and that's with my actively deleting things). At this rate I will have filled my Gmail box in 20 months. That's not confidence-inspiring. There's no way I can open the floodgates for the other 97% of my email to flow into my Gmailbox, or I would overflow it before the end of 2004.
What's sad is that Gmail help tells me "one gigabyte -- while it's not quite a googol, it's probably more storage than you'll ever need. With so much space, you can keep all your messages..." No, actually. I can't. Let me repeat that:
Gmail actually offers much less email storage than I'll ever need.So while I might want to consider Gmail as a net hard drive, I'm feeling increasingly less comfortable considering Gmail as a long-term email solution.
I didn't always feel this way. Once upon a time (four months ago), The Tao Of Mac assuaged my fear of Gmail's quota, with the economics of webmail storage:
Someone who receives an average of 10 messages a day at 32KB/message will take nine years to fill their Gmailbox.I wonder if I'm eventually going to have to abandon my Gmail account because there's no more space.
The Gmail FAQ indicates that Google employees each get a terabyte of gmail, so maybe there will be a way to get more space. I would probably have to pay, since according to the secret source of Google's power, "the yearly monetized value of a webmail [is] in the $1-10 range."
So I sent a question to Gmail help to ask them what happens when I hit my Gmail limit, and if I can buy more space. The answer will affect how I use the Google Operating System going forward.
Update, August 30, 2004. I just got an update from the Gmail team, and it does not look good...
Hello Adam,Oh well. My enthusiasm for Gmail just went down a bunch. Here's my plea to Google:
Thank you for your message.
Gmail provides you with 1,000 megabytes of storage space. When you come
close to reaching your storage limit, the quota displayed along the bottom
of your account changes from green to red to let you know that your
account is near capacity.
Should you go over your storage limit, your account will not receive
We hope you enjoy Google's approach to email.
The Gmail Team
Please let me buy more Gmail capacity if I need it, rather than bouncing any future emails I might get...They're probably being stingy with additional storage because they're anticipating needing that storage in beating eBay and Amazon to the Semantic Web.
What's next for Google? ISP, Browser, Desktop Search, Messenger?