My GMail has been acting up all day today, which is a pain. But, I guess I shouldn't complain because it is still in "beta."
I came across this article dated April 1, 2004 on ZDNet.co.uk:
The company has launched a test with about 1,000 invited guests to try out a new email service called "Gmail".
The company is wary of announcing a launch date for the service until beta testing is complete, but according to Kate Burns, managing director of the Google UK's Ad Sales business, it will be widely available to consumers in a matter of weeks rather than months.
"My feeling is that we have already done an awful lot of testing, so it will be a limited test period -- a matter of weeks,' said Burns.
How come it is still in "beta" more than four years after launch?
Beta has come to mean: "don't blame us if the service is crappy because it is in beta." This is taking things a bit too far, imho. Drop the beta and take full responsibility Google. That is if you want people to take you seriously, and if you seriously want to be more than just "a search company."