gmaillogo I’m sure I’m not the only one that wouldn’t mind an offline mode added to Gmail. There’s been talk of this for quite some time now, especially when Google launched Google Gears, their project to bring online applications offline. Google Reader was the first Google Application to get an offline mode, and it only makes sense that Google would use their own project to take some of their other applications offline, particularly Gmail.

The latest rumor coming from the Hindustan Times says that according to their "highly placed sources," we should expect offline Gmail to launch sometime later this year. They also said that the offline version has already been built and all that’s left to do is internal testing.  As usual, Google won’t confirm this, all they had to say when Wired questioned them about this was "We’re always looking at ways to improve Gmail, but we have nothing specific to announce at this time."

When Gmail does go offline, users would be able to "browse, reply, save drafts and do everything that Gmail currently does in an offline mode, even when you don’t have an Internet connection.  On current indications, this would mean that you would download a software client for this." If Google does this right, they could sweep away some of Microsoft’s Outlook users and influence other emails services to offer an offline mode as well.