Google Buys iOS & Mac Developer Sparrow to Improve Gmail

Sparrow announced on Friday that the company has been purchased by search engine giant Google. Sparrow’s titular product is a popular mail client for iPhone and Mac, and the company’s CEO said that his team would be joining Google’s Gmail team to improve that service.

Sparrow + Google

Sparrow’s Googlefied Logo

“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,” CEO Dom Leca wrote in an announcement on Sparrow’s homepage.

Sparrow’s claim to fame and acquisition was to make an email client that was stripped down, simple to use, attractive, and presented email in a way that was almost closer to a social networking experience than a traditional email app. Sparrow was available only on iOS and Mac, but the product was apparently good enough to attract the attention of Google’s management.

The Verge reported that the purchase price was under $25 million, and that Google’s goal is to bring polish and beauty to the Gmail experience across platforms. It’s a fine example of the old adage that when you want to make your software look better, buy a Mac or iOS developer.

Mr. Leca said that, “While we’ll be working on new things at Google,” Sparrow will continue to be offered and supported. Many have assumed that means ongoing development will cease, which is usually what happens with acquisitions of this nature.