Google Inbox and the Twitter highlights from #inboxhappyhour

Two weeks ago, Google made headlines once again when they released “Inbox.” It’s not Gmail, it’s a new brand of email services. “Inbox” will read your email so you don’t have to (grouping similar messages together), display photos from the email (so you don’t have to actually click on that email from your great-Aunt Kathy to see photos of the family trip to the Grand Canyon), and sending you the “Highlights.”

The Google team has been developing Inbox for years and, as you might imagine, when they unveiled it to the world, invites were in high demand.

On Tuesday, November 5th, between 3 and 4PM PST, Google ran an “Inbox Happy Hour” promotion. Anyone anyone who sent a request to was guaranteed to receive an official invite for Inbox.

Twitter lit up during #InboxHappyHour, with tweets ranging from sarcastic and witty to frustrated and upset.


There was a slight hiccup in the whole #inboxhappyhour when the (apparently) went down for a short period of time and bounced back a series of emails. It was almost ironic.

After that, it was just a series of “I’m waiting…” tweets. It’s safe to say that #inboxhappyhour gathered more interest than Google was expecting. Despite the guarantee to get an invite by 5PM PST (as long as you sent it in the 3PM – 4PM PST window), 12 hours later, some people are still waiting on their invite.

There were also quite a few people who signed up for the Inbox two weeks ago (when it was first released) and let Twitter know they were very annoyed that the #inboxhappyhour people were getting invites before they were.

#inboxhappyhour wasn’t all bad. Plenty of people received their invite on time and loved the new Inbox. 

It doesn’t look like Inbox will replace the Gmail app anytime soon, though. Everyone has their own preferences and the Google team claims that users either choose one or the other – but don’t use both. If you managed to score an invite for Inbox, try it out, and absolutely hate it, you can always switch back to Gmail.

Even if you missed the #inboxhappyhour, you can still request an invite my emailing For more on Inbox, check out this Google blog post.


Grace Buchele Mineta is a quirky Texan freelancer, living in Tokyo with her Japanese salaryman husband. She runs the blog “Texan in Tokyo”, where she draws comics about her daily life as a newlywed navigating silly cultural misunderstandings as an interracial couple.


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