Got a few Gmail accounts, and maybe AIM, Google Talk, and Yahoo IM accounts too? Mash them together with Orgoo.
Josh LowensohnFormer Senior Writer
Josh Lowensohn joined CNET in 2006 and now covers Apple. Before that, Josh wrote about everything from new Web start-ups, to remote-controlled robots that watch your house. Prior to joining CNET, Josh covered breaking video game news, as well as reviewing game software. His current console favorite is the Xbox 360.
Orgoo is a new service for aggregating all sorts of communication platforms together, in one solution. The easiest way to describe it is a mix between a Web mail client and an IM app. You might say, "well my Gmail and Yahoo Mail already have IM built in." To that I'd say you're right, but Orgoo's take is a little bit like Meebo--take all your existing services and integrate them together in one place.
To start out, just plug in any accounts you want to access. Orgoo will handle five of the major IM clients, along with a handful of Web mail providers including Gmail, .Mac, and Yahoo and Microsoft's premium Hotmail services. You can also drop in any old e-mail account that can be accessed via POP or IMAP. The service can save your passwords and login information, so every time you log in to Orgoo, it will pull in each and every account. I found it really helpful with Gmail, since I could be logged into several accounts at once--which usually requires juggling two different kinds of browsers.
Orgoo's interface is a mishmash of the classical mail inbox. Besides your e-mail reader, which takes on an appearance much like that of Yahoo Mail, you've also got an entire buddy list that resides on the right side of the screen. Orgoo employs drag-and-drop to organize your messages and IMchat logs, and you've got a list of folders which can contain several levels of user created nesting; meaning you can store a message within a folder within a folder within a folder, to your heart's content. You can also organize your IMs into tabs on the top, or pop them out (virtual-desktop style) if it's easier for you to manage.
Besides e-mail, Orgoo has a few neat features such as a video mail service that lets you record quick, 30-second messages. You can insert these into any e-mail (Orgoo hosts them for you and adds them as links on the top of the message). There's also live video chat with people on your buddy list, and video chat rooms to talk with several other users at once. The instant messaging portion of the app is really easy to set up, and scales multiple conversations as well as it can for a Web IM app, although once you're talking to about seven people or more, a single tabbed window would be a more elegant solution than tabs and pop-up windows.
The main drawback at this point is Orgoo's speed. The service simply isn't as fast at pulling up your Web mail as Gmail and Yahoo. If you're a Gmail buff, you're also missing out on the conversation view, and built-in calendaring integration. Despite these early shortcomings, Orgoo is on its way to being a really solid solution for integrating multiple chat and e-mail clients into one service--something that's convenient and useful for both power, and casual users with multiple accounts.