The tech and software industry is buzzing after a new email app by Microsoft called “Flow” was leaked on Tuesday (May 19, 2015). Yesterday, the first screenshots unveiling the app leaked. The software giant has yet to announce the app, but a new download page – “Microsoft Confidential” – was spotted Twitter user @h0x0d, as reported by ZDnet’s Mary Jo Foley.
According to the download page, Flow is described as a “great way to have rapid email conversations on your phone with the people who are important to you.” The page also reveals that the app is developed by the Outlook team (the full name of the project is Flow by Outlook), suggesting it is meant to coincide with Microsoft’s email app.
The page points to the app being developed for iPhones but it is unclear if other platforms are being tested as well. This is how the leaked download page describes the app:
Use Flow with anyone, it’s email: Reach anyone with an email address and all conversations for you and others are also in Outlook. Together, you can use Flow and Outlook interchangeably to participate in the same conversations.
Fast, fluid, natural conversations: No subject lines, salutations, or signatures. Flow is designed for fast, light-weight conversations in real time.
Focus on what’s important: Only conversations started in Flow and their replies show up in Flow, not your whole inbox. Focus on your most important person-to-person conversations without the noise.
Basically, Microsoft has built a basic chat app with email as the backbone. This is a unique approach as compared to pretty much all of Microsoft’s competitors who base their communication tools on social networks – not email. Then again, pretty much everyone has an email address so the learning curve for the app (if released) could be flattened unlike competitor apps.
As far as screenshots go, Neowin was the first to get their hands on some, which you can check it out here. These are enough to confirm Flow’s existence, but only time will tell if Microsoft decides to “go with the Flow” and release the app or not.