AOL wants to organize your email clutter with Alto (Update)

Oct 18, 2012 by Barbara Ortutay
This screenshot shows a preview for Alto, AOL Inc. launched Alto on Thursday,Oct. 18, 2012, not as a new email service, but rather, Alto works in concert with other email accounts to clean out and organize messages, social network notifications, daily deals, photos and email attachments. The service is available for free by invitation to users in a closed "beta" test. (AP Photo/Alto)

(AP)—The Internet icon that bought email to the masses with its classic "You've got mail" slogan now wants to help people organize the flood of messages in their Gmail, Yahoo mail and other accounts.

AOL Inc. launched Alto on Thursday. It's not a new email service. Rather, Alto works in concert with other email accounts to clean out and organize messages, social network notifications, daily deals, photos and email attachments. The service is available for free by invitation to users in a closed "beta" test.

Users can set up Alto so that mass-emails, such as those from retailers or daily deals sites, skip their inbox entirely and show up only in Alto. Instead of a text-based list that people are used to in email, Alto uses what it calls "stacks." These take up most of the application's main page. You can use Alto's existing stacks such as "daily deals," ''social notifications," ''retailers" or "photos." Or, you can create your own stacks—for messages from family members, newsletters you subscribe to or event invitations, for example.

Alto also lets users "snooze" certain emails, which can be useful for bill pay notifications or invites.

One downside—Alto is not compatible with Microsoft's email services.

AOL said the goal of Alto is to make email less stressful, harkening back to the days when "You've got mail" made people excited. Excited is not the first emotion that comes to mind for most email users today when a message arrives in one of their inboxes.

Alto was developed in New York-based AOL's Silicon Valley offices in Palo Alto, California. The company's email service is No. 4 in the U.S., behind Yahoo, Google Inc.'s Gmail and Microsoft.

Explore further: Twitpic to stay alive with new owner

not rated yet
add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Yahoo ready to deliver on promise to upgrade email

May 24, 2011

(AP) -- Yahoo Inc. is giving its popular email service a long-promised facelift in an attempt to make it more appealing to people who are increasingly using Facebook, Twitter, Google and other online alternatives to communicate.

Recommended for you

Facebook dressed down over 'real names' policy

Sep 17, 2014

Facebook says it temporarily restored hundreds of deleted profiles of self-described drag queens and others, but declined to change a policy requiring account holders to use their real names rather than drag names such as ...

Yelp to pay US fine for child privacy violation

Sep 17, 2014

Online ratings operator Yelp agreed to pay $450,000 to settle US charges that it illegally collected data on children, in violation of privacy laws, officials said Wednesday.

User comments : 0