Happy 20th Birthday Gmail

Happy 20th birthday to Gmail! Anybody else feel old yet? Google announced it on April 1st, 2004 and people initially thought it was an APRIL FOOLS’ JOKE.

Here’s the thing, Google already had a history of pranking people on April Fools’ Day. So when the Gmail announcement came, people thought it was also fake, because it bragged about people getting ONE FULL GIGABYTE of storage.  That didn’t seem possible in 2004, especially not for free. It was enough to save over 13,000 emails when sites like Yahoo only had enough space to keep 50.  They announced it on April Fools’ Day on purpose.  They knew people would think it was a joke, and that it would be good press when everyone found out it wasn’t.

In the press release, co-founder Larry Page said someone using Google’s old email service complained that they constantly had to delete emails to stay under their four-megabyte limit.  So that’s how Gmail was born.

20 years later, there are roughly 1.8 BILLION active Gmail accounts.

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