L8r is a new service that lets users create an email and have it delivered at a specific time in the future. It’s similar to the popular site FutureMe where anyone can write a simple letter to themselves or a friend and have that letter sent by email sometime in the future, for you know, fun. But what L8r has done is combined this idea of sending an email at a later date with email reminders and a focus on Getting Things Done. (Well, if I put it that way, it sounds more like a basic reminder service) L8r suggests using the service for things like sending out birthday emails, reminding yourself to buy flowers on your anniversary, setting personal goals, and impressing your boss by “sending” an email late at night.
Signing up with L8r will allow you to have three pending emails at any time for free, but if you need to send any more than that, it will cost you. You can purchase 10 emails for $1.99, 200 emails for $9.99, and 1,000 emails for $24.99. When you run out, you’ll be switched back to the free plan. Now, you may be wondering, why pay for L8r when you can send emails in the future with a service like FutureMe for free? Paid users of L8r get more features like file attachments, the ability to send HTML email, unlimited pending emails, and SSL security. L8r will also get rid of that annoying “sent later with l8r” message at the bottom of your messages.
What I like about L8r is that you can create email drafts and view pending and sent email in the messages area just like you would a normal email client. The benefit of this is that you can keep record of sent mail and fix any mistakes you have made in a pending email before it gets sent out. L8r will also send you an email when a message cannot be delivered and put it in the “undelivered” tab. This way, if you sent a message to an email address that doesn’t exist or if someone’s mail server is down, you can find out what email didn’t make it and send again. Another feature is the ability to send an email to more than one person. You just separate multiple email addresses with a comma in the “to” field and L8r will send to each recipient.
Even though L8r isn’t anything all that new when compared to email reminders (except that it sends up to five years in the future), I think it’s a pretty neat service. I can see it being helpful for people that use reminders in their daily workflow and need more than basic text messages. You can have three pending emails at any time for free and get extras like HTML mail, attachments, and SSL when you pay for more. Something L8r may also want to consider is allowing users to send recurring messages to themselves for repeating tasks and personal goals. I also ran into a couple minor problems. First, when editing an email, the time did not offset properly from its original set time. Also, when trying to buy more email credits, L8r directed me to a PayPal checkout for Netherlands users and I couldn’t make a purchase. (Maybe not such a minor problem) Otherwise, everything ran well and future emails that I sent out arrived on average 2-3 minutes after my set time.
As a last note, another service similar to L8r and FutureMe is FutureMail which allows you to send email in the future as a note or reminder to yourself. FutureMail also has this neat concept of a “FutureMail Blog” where you get a public stream of your future messages and an RSS feed to share with friends.