The Estonian startup, which offers apps for iOS, Android, MacOS, Windows, and the Web, is introducing what it calls ‘Fleep ID’, a username that you can hand out to contacts with whom you’d like to converse via Fleep. However, because a Fleep ID is email compatible — mine is firstname.lastname@example.org — it can be used over time to wean yourself off email.
Any messages sent to your Fleep ID, even if they are from somebody who isn’t a user of the messaging app, show up in Fleep, threaded and sorted by participants and with all of Fleep’s other features in tact.
These include the ability to add additional participants to a conversation (including non-Fleep users via email), pin a message to your to-do list, see if a message has been read, and access your ‘file draw’, a single place that surfaces file attachments relating to a conversation.
“Launching our own ID is an important milestone for Fleep,” says Fleep co-founder and CEO Henn Ruukel in a statement. “We are not just building another internal team tool, another HipChat or Slack, that doesn¹t interest us. Instead we are on a mission to build a truly viable alternative to email conversations.”
However, in a sense, to conquer email you must first become email. Hence the way a FleepID is, to those outside the app, an email address like any other. See the two screen shots below.
“Fleep ID looks like email but it’s not, it’s just email compatible,” Ruukel tells me in a Fleep chat. “The way I like to think of this is that Fleep ID is like mobile phone numbers when they were introduced aside landline numbers. Of course landline was the majority back then and it probably even sounded nonsense that someone would have on their business card only a mobile phone number one day. Well this day arrived. Now we want to do the same for email. We’re introducing the Fleep network aside email and people can migrate over to a better experience, optmized for conversations, everyone at their own pace.”