Alternative Email Client Sparrow Acquired by Google


macrumors bot
Original poster
Apr 12, 2001

Alternative email client Sparrow has been acquired by Google. From Sparrow's website:
We're excited to announce that Sparrow has been acquired by Google!

We care a lot about how people communicate, and we did our best to provide you with the most intuitive and pleasurable mailing experience.

Now we're joining the Gmail team to accomplish a bigger vision -- one that we think we can better achieve with Google.

We'd like to extend a special thanks to all of our users who have supported us, advised us, given us priceless feedback and allowed us to build a better mail application. While we'll be working on new things at Google, we will continue to make Sparrow available and provide support for our users.

We had an amazing ride and can't thank you enough.

Full speed ahead!

Dom Leca
Sparrow originally launched on the Mac, but an iPhone version was released earlier this year. Leca also said that Sparrow's products will continue to be made available with "support and critical updates", but Sparrow does not plan to release new features. There's no word whether Push email support -- promised earlier this year -- will make its way to the iOS app or if that has been pushed aside.

Late last year, Google released an iOS Gmail app which was received poorly by users. Google issued this statement on the acquisition, but wouldn't divulge details of the purchase:
The Sparrow team has always put their users first by focusing on building a seamlessly simple and intuitive interface for their email client. We look forward to bringing them aboard the Gmail team, where they'll be working on new projects.
Update: The Verge says Sparrow was acquired for "under $25 million" and that there was no bidding war for the company.

Article Link: Alternative Email Client Sparrow Acquired by Google


macrumors member
Jan 11, 2012
I don't use Sparrow, but it's certainly exciting. My guess is that Google ditches the paid version, and uses their ad platform over the existing ads on the free version, eventually becoming the default Gmail desktop client.


macrumors 68030
Jul 7, 2009
I'm sorry, but with this move, I can't use Sparrow. I'm not a fan of Google's tactics, now they can more closely monitor our emails.


macrumors 6502a
Feb 26, 2011
Sparrow is great. All I wish and pray for is that Google doesn't do to Sparrow what Twitter did to Tweetie.

Small White Car

macrumors G4
Aug 29, 2006
Washington DC
Well, there goes the dream of a good, small-company, independent e-mail app.

I never even used it but this seems kind of sad.

I wonder if Google will end up replacing their terrible iOS G-Mail app with this or if they'll live side-by-side for some unknown reason.


macrumors newbie
Jul 28, 2010
In the present
And at this news, an angel cried.

The only way I can see this turning out good is if Google used Sparrow as the base app for them to build off of instead of having the Sparrow people help fix the current Google app. I hope this actually ends up improving the Gmail web interface, but history makes me think it'll just be the end of another good company. :(


macrumors 68000
Oct 27, 2003
There was a time when Google made awesome software, and any project that they took on I was hopeful about. I still respect most of Google's software, but at some point in the last few years I started hanging my head lower and lower when they bought someone out. Without thinking about it, I have started lumping them in with Microsoft and Yahoo as giant companies that I hope never purchases my favorite software company.

To be fair, I wouldn't want Apple owning many of my favorite software companies either, but Apple doesn't generally buy brand companies, and opts for ones you've never heard of, or don't even have a product on the market yet. Certainly Apple isn't doing that to make me happy, but when I hear a company is about to be bought out, my fear is not that it's Apple.


macrumors 604
Oct 5, 2008
I'm sorry, but with this move, I can't use Sparrow. I'm not a fan of Google's tactics, now they can more closely monitor our emails.
You being on the internet is being monitored. Get over that Google monitors your stuff...


macrumors regular
Feb 13, 2012
Apple does not need two desktop clients.
It's called integration, friend.

Or simply: Apple acquires Sparrow. Apple incorporates Sparrow's design and feature improvements over Mail, into Mail. Apple's Mail thus becomes better.