A few weeks ago I ran into a Beta for a product called Xobni Insite. (Xobni is Inbox spelled backwards). Xobni is another in a long line of email taming tools (NeoPro, TrogBar, Jello.Dashboard, Orgoo, etc).
The big difference is this one really works.
Unlike a lot of the “inbox tamers” this one does not try to change the way I work. Instead it augments it. That was the key for me. I ran the Xobni installed, it installs a simple sidebar and starts to catalog all my emails. I have about 6 sets of Personal Folders and Xobni found them all.
Once all the emails were cataloged (it only took a few minutes) I was ready to go. I clicked on my first email in my inbox and here’s what I got Email analytics Each sender was ranked by the total amount of emails I sent them and that I received from them I got a break down of the average time when emails were received by me from that sender. I quickly realized I have too many friends sending me emails at 1:30 am.
I love this feature. I have a lot of people who do not have access to my exchange server. With the click of a button, it will send that user a list of my availability times for the next 7 days.
Xobni’s instant search allows me to search for someone with my emails.. For example I type in Daniel, I get a Wiki search, all people with Daniel as their name or part of their name and every email with the name Daniel mentioned in the body and/or title.
Quick Attachment Discovery.
Every attachment, no matter what folder, exchanged with this user is now accessible from the panel.
All my conversations with that user in one place. Click a thread and I see the conversation in full without leaving my inbox. I can directly reply or forward from the Xobni bar. It brings my favorite aspect of Gmail to Outlook (finally!)
Automatically extracts a contact’s phone number from their signature. And supports dialing via Skype directly.
This area shows me every person connected via email to that user. What is nice is address I have sent “one-off’s” to are listed here as they were part of communications with that user at some point.
Access to Appointments, Tasks, To-Do’s and Follow-up
All right from the Xobni bar.
The bottom line is the constant toggling between Outlook calendar, inbox, personal folders, and the to-do list is a pain and time consuming. Xobni removes all that. It lets you look for everything from within the sidebar, and correspond with people from it — all without leaving the email you were originally working on. See it in action for yourself at their site at http://www.xobni.com. If you like, they have a video demo of the product there too.
Again, Xobni is still in beta but it’s one to watch and grab when the beta is up. If you do get in, Xobni offers some free invites for your friends.
Stephen is Sr. Partner and Network Architect with Odyssey Consulting Group and a Microsoft MVP in Connected Systems.