The Other Half of Mail

July 24, 2008

Being able to send letters from your computer is great.  But you still have to go down to your mailbox and pick up your incoming mail.  Thankfully, there are several services willing to take care of that for you.

Earth Class Mail allows you to set up a mailing address at one of their facilities and direct your incoming mail there.  They scan the mail and provide it to you online.  If you need the actual letter, they handle forwarding that on to you.  It really seems that this is something the USPS should do (and working with national postal systems is part of Earth Class Mail’s model).

Pixily is a new entrant.  Rather than automatically handling your mail, they have you collect your documents and then re-mail them to their center.  If you still want to receive your mail directly but would like to have someone else handle document scanning (for bills or other pieces you want saved), this is a great option.  There are similar services like Shoeboxed which focus on receipts (as I glance nervously at the wad on receipts on the floor next to me).

Paper documents and mail still have a place, but for many of us, that place should be far away from our desks and offices.  Postful lets you handle the outgoing side.  These services let you handle the incoming.  It’s a combination which allows you to stay connected across all formats while working in the way that’s best for you.

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Like many websites that utilize Amazon’s storage services, we’re experiencing some technical difficulties.  Amazon is working on the problems and we expect a resolution soon.

In the meantime, the key thing to note is that none of your letters are lost.  They are held and will be processed as soon as Amazon’s services are back online.  Our system is designed to avoid losing messages in the event that even large portions of our service go down (no failover system is perfect, but this has been a high priority for us).

We’ll update here as soon as the situation changes.

UPDATE: Things seem to be back online.  We’ll be monitoring closely to make sure this is a stable fix.