Powerinbox a Boston, MA-based open app platform for email, is a startup whose idea is to innovate on top of email by augmenting the messages sent to you by various services, essentially turning your emails into apps. Powerinbox, the new email platform that lets you run apps for Facebook, Twitter, and Groupon inside your inbox has today added support for Google+. (Despite not having access to an official Google+ API, the company was able to analyze the Google+ protocol by tracking the requests between the official Google+ client and server. Powerinbox then created its own internal API and built its Google+ client app on top of it.) These apps run within the body of your email message by way of a downloadable Web browser extension. Currently, Powerinbox supports Gmail, Hotmail and Yahoo mail, but it plans to add support for Outlook soon. The company’s open app platform makes developers create apps that run on all email using HTML5.
Now, when you receive a Google+ notification via email, you can use the Powerinbox app to immediately add that person to one of your Google+ Circles. Support for commenting and status updates is coming next. For example, when you receive a message that someone followed you on Twitter, you can use the Powerinbox app to see their tweets, follow them back, send them an @reply or direct message. For Facebook notifications, you can view the photos and posts from your friends and comment back, all without having to visit Facebook.com. A Groupon deal email includes a live countdown on time left to buy, and indicates whether the deal has tipped.
In the future, Powerinbox plans on adding support for more apps, including Dropbox, Netflix, eBay, LinkedIn, airlines, news and even games. What other apps people like, according to the results of the survey the company was running on its website, requests for Google+ beat out LinkedIn, YouTube, Flickr, PayPal and half a dozen other services.