New Hover Webmail is Just Around the Corner

Starting today, when you log in to your Hover email account, you’ll see a new option to preview our new, faster, better-looking webmail.

We’re giving everyone a chance to try it out for the next couple of weeks but keeping the option to use the current webmail during the transition. On June 25, new webmail will become the standard webmail for everyone.

Some highlights:

  • Much faster – you’ll instantly notice the difference in speed when opening messages, and navigating around settings
  • Better looking – webmail sports a more modern, and much cleaner look
  • Easier to use – we’ve improved the settings area to make things clearer and more intuitive

A few specific improvements from the long list:

  • Threaded conversations – you can choose to group messages by thread if you want (or not)
  • A far better HTML message editor – insert images, bold or color text, or add a bulleted list with ease
  • Better contacts – more fields to keep your contacts organized

…and more.

New Webmail

We’d love to hear your feedback during the Preview period (today until June 25, when new webmail becomes the default). There’s a handy link to the feedback form right in webmail if you run into any bugs, or have suggestions on how to improve things.

We’ve also published an extensive help article to get you started – check that out here!

Enjoy!

Preview what we’re working on at Hover

If you’re the kind of person who likes to live on the cutting edge when it comes to things like your phone OS, new apps and web services then we have a little something for you.

Starting today, we’re letting people like you (and anyone else) take the next version of Hover for a spin.

Up until now, we’ve generally waited until something was just right before we made the switch and put it live for everyone. But sometimes we’d love to let a few people in on what we’re building so we can get some feedback, and do some real-world testing of a new feature.

Introducing Hover Preview

Some things to keep in mind:

  1. You can use either Hover Preview or Hover – it’s all one account, and purchases made on either site will show up in your account as usual. There’s a link at the top of Hover Preview that will take you back to Hover.com anytime you want.
  2. Hover Preview may change – this is our chance to let you try out what we hope will be the next version of the Hover site. Things may change from time to time and features may come and go.

At some point, when we’re happy with how something on Preview is working, we’ll move it to the main site and start working on the next thing. Sometimes Hover Preview and Hover will be the same, other times it won’t be.

Hover Preview

With that out of the way, if you fancy yourself an early adopter and want to see what we’re working on, it’s pretty easy to get involved.

Head to https://preview.hover.com and you’ll see pretty much the same Hover site as you do today, but with a vastly improved domain search and a refreshed pricing page that makes it easier to find the price for a specific TLD you are interested in.

We hope you like it!

Comments and feedback are always welcome. Drop us a line in the comments or on the forums.

Domain of the Month, May: HipsterFood.Kitchen

HipsterFood.Kitchen brings you original vegan recipes that sound almost as delicious as they look. Each post features gorgeous food photography that’s been shot with a professional Nikon and carefully edited with Photoshop.

The idea for HipsterFood.Kitchen came about as a way to demystify veganism. It was a response to the stereotype about ethical eating as an obscure, fleeting trend. The blog aims to show everyone that a vegan lifestyle is totally doable and certainly not going anywhere. It includes accessible foods that won’t break the bank and recipes that can appeal to eaters of all persuasions.

HipsterFood.KitchenWith a beautiful design and impressive photography, the blog reads like a coffee table book. One that would look especially great on a DIY, repurposed vintage coffee table.

Why we love it

HipsterFood.Kitchen took a leap with a new domain extension and ended up scoring a downright great domain name.

After four years on Tumblr, HipsterFood.Kitchen decided they didn’t want to build their entire project on a social blogging platform, only to risk having it fade away like a Myspace band. They recognized that a new domain extension would give continuity to their blog’s hipster theme.

HipsterFood.Kitchen is a domain that stands out from the more common extensions, like .com or .net. It’s a catchy domain name that probably wouldn’t have been available in those more crowded namespaces. Plus, it’s descriptive and tells us what the website is about, while keeping that little bit of magic that makes you want to see it.

Like all great hipsters, the folks behind HipsterFood.Kitchen have an obvious eye for design.

Submit your domain

Fill out the form below to submit your website for Domain of the Month:

5 Apps for Busy Freelancers

When you’re a freelancer, being busy is great. It means you’re fully booked with client projects on the go. It also means you need to find the right tools to handle your workload effectively.

There’s a big difference between being productive and just being busy. Time management and organization are key to staying on top of your projects without letting other things slip – things like marketing, following up with clients, or even more important stuff like, say, you’re personal life. Or sleep.

As a freelancer, you need to manage client accounts, draw up contracts, track time and be awesome at all of it. And the right tools can help you do that.

Here are five of our favourite apps for freelancers:

1. Harvest

Harvest is a simple way to track your working hours and bill clients for it. You just click to start and stop timers throughout the day when you’re working, so you don’t have to lose focus. When you’re ready to wrap things up, you can quickly create invoices for your clients.

Harvest also gives you some pretty neat analytics to help plan your projects more efficiently in the future. When the time comes that your client asks about the progress you’re making, those reports are pretty handy to provide updates and screenshots.

As a freelancer, you tackle all kinds of jobs in a day and not just in front of your computer. Harvest works on your web browser, desktop or mobile device. It’s also compatible with a whole bunch of other tools you may already be using, many of which are included in this list.

HarvestApp

2. Square

Once upon a time, a guy missed out on a big sale because he was unable to accept credit cards. That guy was a friend of Jack Dorsey, Twitter Founder, who was inspired to create Square. Square is a pocket-sized card reader that allows you to sell from wherever you are. It’s an easy and cost-efficient way for freelancers to charge via credit card.

When you sign up for Square, you get a free card reader and the app for your iOS or Android device. You can pay-per-swipe or go for the monthly payment plan. We like the way that Square was designed to be simple, from the product to the pricing model. Nobody likes hidden fees.

squareup

3. Bidsketch

Bidsketch allows you to quickly create professional-looking proposals for your clients. It provides you with clean design templates that are ready for you to add your own images, colours, content, and even embed videos. All of your content is saved for you to reuse on future proposals.

Bidsketch is easy to customize with your logo and even your own domain name to make the whole proposal experience feel consistent with your brand. Since it’s quick and easy to send, you’ll close deals faster and your clients will save time too.

BidsketchApp
4. HelloSign

Sometimes there are other kinds of documents that need to be signed aside from just client proposals, like insertion orders, deliveries and other deals. You can create and share those other legally-binding documents using HelloSign.

Just like Bidsketch, your documents can be signed right in your client’s browser, saving the time and money required to print, scan and send. HelloSign keeps all your important info completely private and secure, and even supports two-factor authentication for your documents. Win.

HelloSignApp

5. Trello

When you’re managing a project (or twelve), it’s nice to be able to visualize what needs to be done. Trello allows you to create and organize your to-do lists. All of your clients and projects are organized into columns, with their individual tasks laid out on cards that are easy to customize.

When it comes to project management apps, it’s one of the most basic tools we’ve seen. The user interface is laid out in a way that just makes sense. If you’re working with a team, Trello offers collaboration tools too, so everyone can stay on the same page.

Trello is free to download with unlimited lists and usage. The paid version has some extra bits of functionality you might like (such as support for larger attachments) and some you’ll definitely like (custom emoji, obviously).

TrelloApp

 

 

 

We Stand Up for Net Neutrality and You Should Too

Today is (yet another) day of action to defend the Open Internet. Yes, there are a lot of these. Yes, they are important. Those wishing to limit the power of the Internet don’t stop, so we can’t either.

The Federal Communications Commission is proposing new rules to allow Internet providers to discriminate based on content to deliver separate and unequal connection speeds. While providers will speak of “priority access” and “fast lanes,” the reality is that we’ll see SLOWER access to non-prioritized (i.e. paid) sites.

We (and our parent company, Tucows) are longtime supporters of an Open Internet. In a truly neutral Internet, all traffic is treated the same.

If you want to help the protest and show Congress you care about Net Neutrality, you can run the code on your website too. If you are in the United States you should contact Congress and let them know this is wrong. You can also join the conversation on Twitter using the hashtag #stoptheslowlane.

stoptheslowlane

 

.Club Domains Are Here

We launched .club domains this week and we’re pretty excited about it.

It’s one of our favourite new domain extensions and we’re not the only ones who feel that way – .club is already ranking the sixth most popular of all the new domain extensions, and they’ve only been generally available for two days. We love that it’s a name that can add meaning for all kinds of groups, businesses and associations.

In fact, we love them so much that we’re offering them for just $10/yr. That’s the lowest price out there for a one year registration of .club.

club2

What’s so great about .club?

.Club domains are perfect for member associations and groups of all types:

  • Country clubs
  • Sports clubs
  • Night clubs
  • Fan clubs
  • Book clubs
  • Loyalty programs
  • Affinity groups
  • Teams

Even online groups that are based on social media sites, like Facebook, can use .club to create a unique and dedicated domain. They’re instantly recognizable and tell everyone what your website is about.

It’s easy to get a great domain name with .club. Since there are plenty of options available, you have a better chance of getting an exact match of your group’s name without compromising. That’s not so easy in the more crowded namespaces of other generic domains, like .com (BieberFan.club is available, just saying).

There are no restrictions on .club domains, so they’re just as easy to get as the more common options. Just head over to Hover and search a few keywords for your club or group to see what’s available!

Also, the .club registry has a great jingle that’s not to be missed. We’ve been enjoying it here at Hover HQ.

 

 

 

Notes from the Product Manager for April, 2014

It’s said that April showers bring May flowers. In Toronto, where Hover is headquartered, not much seems to be happening throughout the month of April in terms of the switch from dreary winter to green and colourful spring. But once May hits, look out! Seemingly overnight the trees will (hopefully) sprout a green canopy of leaves and the gardens will explode with spring flowers.

Something similar is going on at Hover right now. We’ve been super busy this month with a ton of stuff, but there’s not really a whole lot to show for it, especially from a customer-perspective.

Better Search, More Domains

Dreary April in TorontoWe’ve been hard at work laying the foundation for some nice improvements to our domain search including categorization that will help you find the domain you want in a world with hundreds of different domain extensions. Watch for that in the next few weeks!

Speaking of new domains, we added another couple dozen new domain extensions in April. In fact, the pace of new extensions is quickening a bit as more new registries come online. Another batch of six extensions went live this week alone.

Fewer Bugs, Better Verification

We also stamped out a bunch of bugs and did some spring cleaning (staying with the theme). We’ve been working closely with our Customer Support team of late to identify issues that generate support calls and emails in an effort to reduce confusion or make things work better.

Last but not least, we made some additional improvements to the ICANN-mandated Registrant Verification. You’ll note that we now host the verification page ourselves at approve.hover.com as opposed to the more generic (and potentially confusing domainadmin.com domain).

Until next month!

Domain of the Month, April: Omg.Coffee

This month, we’re bringing you one of our favourite websites we’ve seen with a new domain extension.

Omg.coffee is a single-serving site that generates a new coffee animation every time you click. From vintage GIFs of espresso being brewed to your favourite coffee-related moments from popculture, they’ve got it. The site also works on mobile for all your procrastination needs.

It’s an infinite loop of caffeinated goodness. You’re welcome.

omgcoffee

Why we love it

This is exactly what we love about the new domain extensions (TLDs). You don’t need some brilliant branding strategy or startup idea to make the most of them.

We’ve seen lots of people adopting the new TLDs in lots of interesting ways, like updating their domain names to better ones, since they no longer need to settle for a domain that’s less than perfect.

We’ve also seen people just doing decidedly awesome stuff with the new TLDs. Stuff that just wasn’t possible with more limited domain options, where most short and meaningful keywords are already taken.

There are so many opportunities to create entertaining microblogs and single-serving sites with the new TLDs. It’s easier than ever to be part of the unique Internet culture of epic practical jokes, crowdfunding, LOLspeak, and other viral phenomena.

With a simple idea and a great domain name, omg.coffee is now part of the weird and wonderful web.

Submit your domain

Fill out the form below to submit your website for Domain of the Month:

Is It Time To Update Your Domain Name?

We’ve launched 56 new domain extensions and will be introducing many more over the next few months. With all these new options, it’s becoming a whole lot easier to get the domain name that best represents your online identity.

When you first searched for that perfect domain name, was it already taken? You’re not alone. In a world of 1.5 billion Internet users and over 250 million registered domains, it’s been incredibly difficult to find the domain name that best suits you or your idea.

That means a lot of people have had to settle for a domain that’s less than perfect – adding a dash, dropping a vowel, or including an ambiguous keyword, like “the” or “inc.” Le sigh. All those compromises make your domain harder to remember and a little less magical.

Good news. You now have better chances of getting the domain name you really want. Here’s why:

newtlds

They’re descriptive

There are meaningful keywords built right into the new TLDs. A TLD (Top-Level Domain) is everything to the right of the last dot. The new TLDs include descriptive terms that are closely related to the nature or purpose of the websites, like .photography, .tips, and .today. They help communicate exactly what kind of content users will find at your domain name.

They’re shorter

The fact that the new domain extensions have relevant keywords in the TLD means that they can be shorter. When the TLD already speaks for itself, you don’t need to have that word repeated in your domain name.

You can also shorten up your domain by eliminating those unnecessary dashes and character combinations that make your domain name difficult to pronounce or spell. A great domain name is one that simply rolls off your tongue.

With the new TLDs, a domain like www.the-jamison-gallery-inc.com can be shortened and simplified to www.jamison.gallery.

They’re memorable

A short and catchy domain name is easy to remember. Getting rid of those ambiguous keywords and characters makes it easier for users to find you online again and again.

They’re searchable

You might be wondering how the new domain extensions will rank in search results. According to Matt Cutts of Google, the old and new TLDs can perform equally well in terms of search engine optimization.

“Google has a lot of experience in returning relevant web pages, regardless of the top-level domain (TLD). Google will attempt to rank new TLDs appropriately, but I don’t expect a new TLD to get any kind of initial preference over .com”

They’re distinct

Your domain name is the first thing people see and there are lots of other places online they can choose to go instead. The new TLDs stand out from what Internet users are used to seeing to the right of the dot. They naturally help make your website more recognizable, especially as an early adopter. And that’s just cool.

 

What we love most about the new TLDs is that they offer new possibilities to do awesome things on the Internet. Try typing a few keywords into the Hover search bar to help spark some ideas of your own.

 

 

.Link Domains Are Now Available

You can now register and manage .link domains right here at Hover.

.Link domains are a little different than the other domain extensions we’ve been launching since February, when ICANN started expanding the number of TLDs. A lot of the new TLDs are descriptive of the website’s topic and have meaning built right in. For example, artists can showcase their work with .gallery domains, while .clothing is perfect for storefronts, tailors, and anyone in the clothing industry.

.Link is unique because it’s truly generic. Since a hyperlink is just the way we connect with info online, the .link extension can be a good fit for nearly any domain. It’s for, well, links.

What can I do with a .link domain?

Since .link domains are inherently generic, all kinds of ideas, projects and brands can use them. But, we’ve seen some other creative uses for .link domains as well. Here are just a couple ideas we think are pretty neat:

Personal Directory

A .link domain would make a great directory for your personal links. You can use Hover’s domain forwarding feature to direct users to your social profiles, such as yourname.link/facebook. Or, you can set up subdomain forwarding in the same way to use facebook.yourname.link.

Customized URL Shortening

You can also use your .link domain with a URL shortening service, like bit.ly. It’s a great way to brand the content you’d like to share online. Using your .link domain name, “yourname.link” would take the place of ”bit.ly” in a shortened URL.

So, your link would appear like this: “yourname.link/n9dnms8Y.”

Instead of like this: “bit.ly/n9dnms8Y”

Get a highfive-worthy domain name

With seven billion increasingly tech-savvy people on Earth, it’s becoming more and more difficult to find the best possible domain for your project. Plenty of great domains are available for .link, so you have a better chance of finding one that’s right for you without compromising.

That also means there are endless opportunities for entertaining websites and microblogs, which we’ve payed homage to in the past. Searching for funny keywords can spark pretty brilliant microblogging ideas, like dontclickthis.link or sausage.link.

By the way, .link domains are officially the most affordable domain extension. For just $10/yr., you get four letters for less than the price of three in the comparable .com. Bargain, right?

Try searching some of your own keywords for some creative inspiration:

GetStarted

Stay tuned! We’ll be launching many more new TLDs over the next few months. Connect with us on Twitter and Facebook where we’ll be making announcements.