State of the ProtonMail Waiting List

Dear Early Adopters,

When we released ProtonMail Beta to the public on May 16th, 2014 after nearly a year of development, we were expecting maybe a few thousand users to try out our system over the summer.  However, within 2 days, we shot past 20k users and were overwhelmed by the global demand.  In order to keep our servers and ourselves from getting crushed by the influx of traffic and user requests, we had to turn off instant access and funnel new sign ups onto our waiting list.

To speed up the development of ProtonMail and bring privacy to people faster, we wanted to make it possible for the team to work full time so we launched our crowdfunding campaign on June 17th.  Our goal was $100k, but once again, privacy conscious individuals from around the world joined our cause and we blew past our goal in 3 days.  More and more people realized the importance of privacy and learned about our unique project. When the campaign ended in July, we had raised over $500k and our waiting list stood at over 200k.Below is our schedule for inviting users.

September 2014: 10,000

October 2014: 10,000

November 2014: 100,000

December 2014: 100,000

Over the last few months, we have been working hard to improve ProtonMail and scale up to meet the global demand.  Some of you have asked us why it is taking so long.  When will I get my invite?  As much as we would like to give ProtonMail to everyone, the reality is that we are not an established internet giant with server farms and thousands of engineers / support staff.

Our focus on protecting our users’ privacy means we cannot use cloud services such as AWS even though that would be much easier.  Instead, we must buy our own servers and install them in datacenters in Switzerland, which is a time consuming and costly process.  In addition to getting the hardware and software to scale, we must also grow our engineering and customer support teams.  We require new members to not only be smart and capable, but also are trustworthy and live by the highest ethical standards.  These things all take time but we believe in the long run, it is important to get right.

For those who are still waiting for ProtonMail invites, the light is shining brightly at the end of the tunnel!  We are doing additional infrastructure upgrades and plan to send invites to most of the current waiting list starting in mid-November.  By the holiday season, everyone who has been waiting for more than a month should have received a secure and private Swiss email account.  Over the next several months, we will put the remaining crowdfunding contributions to use building the ProtonMail mobile apps and many new features to make ProtonMail complete.  Thanks for your support and patience!

server
Installing servers near Zurich.

Best regards,

The ProtonMail Team

About the Author

Proton Team

Proton was founded by scientists who met at CERN and had the idea that an internet where privacy is the default is essential to preserving freedom. Our team of developers, engineers, and designers from all over the world is working to provide you with secure ways to be in control of your online data.