Yesterday Google relaunched offline access for Gmail, Calendar, and Docs. The new HTML5-based capability replaces the previous functionality built using Google Gears. Gmail is the first application to get an upgrade in the form of a Chrome application that can be launched using a new tab within the Chrome browser (no other browsers need apply). My conclusions on the topic can be read in a new post on WindowsITPro.com.
Essentially, although I like seeing the offline capability returning to Gmail and will use it, I still despair at the inability of Google to create a really good email and calendar client that will threaten the dominance of Outlook and force Microsoft to innovate faster. Oh well… see what you think and feel free to disagree!