Workplace app Slack that has been growing at a breakneck pace since its debut four years ago has bought the email client Astro. Used by big dogs such as Yelp, Sony, and eBay, Slack intends to make workplace communication easier by reducing the number of channels involved.
Launched in 2015, Astro is an email app that comes with Astrobot, a smart assistant that highlights important emails, archive unwanted ones, and manage your calendar. In short, both Astro and Slack intend to take care of time-eating tasks so that you can concentrate on the more important ones.
While Slack continues to grow, with over 50 million channels created so far, it understands that the importance of email cannot be undermined. This isn’t the first time Slack has teamed up with Astro, as the later had previously launched the Astrobot Slack app to make it easier for Slack users to check their emails and calendars from within the app. Realizing their shared vision, the companies have now joined forces to make a bigger impact on workplace communications. With Astro on board, interoperability will become simpler as well as more powerful.
While it isn’t clear what exactly Slack has in mind, we might see it launching its own email app in the future and introduce more ways of accessing your email from within the app. While this obviously would involve basic email management, it will be interesting to see what new features are brought to the table to collaborate on emails.
The only downside to the acquisition is that Astro as we know it will cease to exist. The company will shut down its Android, iOS, Mac, Alexa, and Slack apps on October 10. New signups have already been disabled and the app has been taken down from the Google Play Store as well. This may not bode well with some users, especially those who do not use Slack, as there aren’t many reliable third-party email clients around and Astro really did offer some indispensable features.