Google announced Gmail offline access yesterday, I read on the web different interpretations of what it is and what it means for your offline email activities like checking and composing emails even when offline.
Well, if you are currently using Outlook or any other desktop counter parts, there is nothing new on the table. Gmail was one of the first providers to provide free POP/IMAP access. So if you have outlook or any other desktop email application, you could readily access Gmail and compose emails while offline. This functionality was not new.
This new offer is for those who do not use any desktop email client applications like outlook but only use Gmail in a browser. Gmail with the help of Google gears now can download all email and store in the browser add-on (gears) to provide offline access to your emails. It will even allow you to compose an email and send it when connected to the Internet.
This functionality as such is nothing special if you already accessing Gmail with a client application. But if you prefer an alternative from Google, then this will be for you.