May
13
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Product Preview: Manage Multiple Gmail Accounts Like a Pro with Shift

Header image for Shift, managing multiple gmail and Google accounts

 

Header image for Shift, managing multiple gmail and Google accounts

 

Today, chances are that you have and need to manage multiple Google accounts. You might be a student who has a personal account, as well as a school account. Or maybe you’re just a professional who makes use of a number of different Google products… they’re notorious for not allowing this or that from one product to another. Like Andy Wolber from Tech Republic says, the more you use Google, the better the odds are that you end up with multiple accounts.

Or maybe you’re a marketer who needs to switch between different accounts throughout the day. It gets tedious fast, doesn’t it? Sure, you can link accounts and constantly clicky click click your avatar and switch, switch, switch. But why jump through hoops when you don’t have to?

Let’s fix that, shall we? Previously, I talked about Ghost Browser, which is nice. You can create “sessions” that can have multiple tabs signed into whatever you need. In one session, you could be signed into Gmail, Twitter and anything else for one account. Then in another session, signed into all of them on a second account. It’s super handy and you can see more about that below.

But today, we’re concentrating on managing multiple Google accounts. Mainly using Gmail, Google Calendar and Google Drive. You can do this easily with Shift.

 

What is Shift?

Shift is an application I discovered on Product Hunt that you can download for free (there’s also a pro version). You can then have multiple Gmail, Google Drive and Google Calendars open and freely switch between them with one click. It’s also multilingual, with over 40 languages supported.

 

Free version limitations

While it’s free, it’s important to note that there are limitations unless you upgrade to the pro version ($19.99/year, can choose to auto-renew or not to auto-renew). Here are the differences you get with the pro version:

 

  • Removes the “Sent with Shift” message added to free version emails
  • Allows you to add Outlook and Office 365 accounts
  • Connect unlimited number of accounts (free version limited to two Google accounts)

 

Note: All users are given one month free of the pro version after downloading.

 

While I’m loving Shift (hence sharing this with you), there are some potential downsides…

 

Another something to download?

Some of the comments on the Product Hunt page make a good point. One was that this is just something else that you have to download to your PC. And that using Gmail within the app means you can’t use browser extensions. So if you rely on Gmail extensions it might not be for you. But there’s an upside to it, too. If you’re using the app, it’s probably much faster than relying on multiple tabs in different browsers.

 

Google Drive – Not Google Docs

While you can certainly access Google Drive within the app, you can’t actually open or edit files directly. You can only view them. If you click an actual file, it will open in your browser window.

 

Note: Shift developers say that both Chrome extensions and the ability to open, edit and save docs in Google Drive are in the works.

 

Conclusion

Shift is a beautifully designed, fast app for managing multiple Gmail accounts. But until the new features are released, it might not be ideal for some people. And it’s not the first of its kind (Kiwi is mentioned several times in the Product Hunt comments), but the developer seems to have big plans for it and listening to/working with users to keep improving it.

Have you used Shift or are you going to give it a try? How does it compare to other products that you’ve tried?

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