Mozilla have launched a spin-off company, Mozilla Messaging, which states as its mission to improve “the killer app of the internet” — email.
The initial focus for Mozilla Messaging is the development of Thunderbird 3, which will deliver significant improvements, notably integrated calendaring, better search and enhancements to the overall user experience. Thunderbird is a free, open source email application that is used by millions of people around the world and is built using the same open source development model as the award-winning Mozilla Firefox Web browser.
Thunderbird has been my mail client of choice for roughly 7 years (I created a wishlist of features a few years ago, some of which have been since incorporated) so I’m delighted to see it get this kind of backing. Thunderbird has its quirks, as does every mail client. Yes there are features that are sorely lacking (calendar integration, for one), however when you look at factors such as reliability, interoperability, spam filtering and price, you just can’t beat it.
With a team of full-time, paid developers and a terrific community of users, testers and developers, I’m excited to see what comes out of this project. Thunderbird may well step out of Firefox’s shadow after all.