For as long as Gmail has existed, it has been an invite only, which meant that you couldn’t get an account unless you managed to find some kind soul to invite you for one.
During the early days invites were rare and you could even find them for sale on eBay. I remember getting my invite from some forum with the condition I had to give back, which I did.
Gmail may not be out of beta yet, but the Google Blog announced that it has now been opened up for all users from all over the world. You no longer need an invite to get yourself a Gmail account!
Now, what do I do with my 99 invites… ?