I would estimate I spend roughly 20 percent of any given day in Gmail. So naturally, I want a way to spend more time looking at the Gmail logo. Luckily Paul Truong, a “creative technologist” (I want that job) at Google spent his own 20 percent time coming up with a way.
Gmail is a great product; easily one of my favorites on the web. But it has an Achilles heel — well, actually it’s more like a bum leg: Contacts. Despite a solid contact area being a vital part of pretty much every email and productivity service, Gmail’s is awful. Or, it was awful. Today it’s getting a lot better.
Starting today, Google is rolling out its latest version of Gmail to users around… → Read More
While I occasionally rag on Google Apps for downtime, the fact of the matter is that some of them are getting pretty amazing. The crown jewel is still, of course, Gmail. It’s so good that I haven’t regularly used a desktop email client in years. But despite that fact, there have still been a few things I’ve always missed, such as simple drag-and-drop to insert images into messages. Tonight, that… → Read More
Since October 19, 2005, Gmail has been known as “Google Mail” in the UK. The means that everyone who signed up since that point was forced to use the cumbersome @googlemail.com address rather than a @gmail.com one. But soon, Gmail is going on a UK comeback tour. And the better news: all those with @googlemail.com addresses can “upgrade” to a gmail.com one.
So why the change? Well, initially… → Read More
If you live in Gmail all day, you’re almost certainly going to want to activate a new feature that just want live in labs: Gmail Sneak Peek. The feature, as the name suggests, allows you to get a preview of the message you’ve currently got selected, without actually opening it (it reminds me a bit of the preview pane you get in Mac OS X when you hit the spacebar).
After activating Sneak Peak in… → Read More
I’ve been a happy Gmail user for years, and never had any complaints about its ability to separate legitimate emails from spam. Nevertheless, I’ve made a habit out of regularly checking my spam folder out of fear of missing important emails, even though I used to have to recover only one or maybe two messages per month. Now I’m glad I made a habit out of doing that.
Since about a week and a… → Read More
[France] Kwaga, which offers a semantic email organiser, has announced that users of its Kwaga Birdseye product can log in without handing over their Gmail password. That’s because the service now supports Google’s newly rolled out implementation of the OAuth standard, a first for a European company, says Kwaga.
The Paris-based startup was a third-party developer tester and worked with Google’s… → Read More
This morning, Gmail users are getting one more weapon in the fight against phishers and malware. In a blog post, Google has announced that it is adding a new feature that alerts users when the service detects “suspicious account activity”. Namely, Gmail will now give users a warning if it detects that they’re accessing their accounts from two different geographic regions within a short amount of… → Read More
During the Behind the Scenes of Gmail panel today at the SXSW festival in Austin, Texas, team member Jonathan Perlow made a revelation that will be a huge relief to power Gmail users: things will soon get a lot faster.
When addressing the question, “why is Gmail slow?,” Perlow asked the audience to raise their hands if they thought Gmail was too slow. A solid number of people raised their hands. → Read More
Today at the Gmail Behind The Scenes panel at the SXSW festival in Austin, Texas, key team members of the Gmail team revealed the true secret of the service: Shit umbrellas.
Product manager Todd Jackson made the humorous revelation when explaining how the Gmail team works as a group of about 100 people, the vast majority of which are engineers. “You can either be a shit funnel or a shit umbrella… → Read More
Earlier this week, we reported on a number of new security enhancements that we expect Gmail to launch in the next few days, including oAuth support. It looks like we were right: a small startup called Etacts, which launched last month, has just implemented oAuth for Gmail IMAP accounts, allowing Etacts to securely tap into your email without the security risks associated with handing over your… → Read More
If your Gmail account is down or consistently throwing random errors your way, like my account is right now, note that it isn’t just you. According to the Apps Status Dashboard, a “significant subset of users” started running into trouble at around 9:45 AM Pacific Time.
At 11:34 PM, Google posted an update, saying that Google Mail service had been restored for some users, and that it expected a… → Read More
Gmail is known for launching a plethora of nifty little features through Labs that make the email platform more attractive and easy to use. In total, Gmail Labs has 60 features that can be turned on and off and is steadily adding more enhancements. Yesterday, Google announced that six features will be graduating from Labs and will become regular features of Gmail. And Google will also be retiring… → Read More
As you might have heard earlier today, Google made another acquisition — the email search startup reMail. While its topical description may make it seem like an obvious buy, there’s another layer that makes this really interesting. reMail isn’t just any email search startup, it’s a startup working to perfect email search on the iPhone. Or rather, it was.
Here’s the key part of reMail founder… → Read More
Yesterday, we saw Microsoft shamelessly go after the iPhone with a video which played at Mobile World Congress for its new Windows Phone 7 Series. But it’s not just Apple that Microsoft is taking on with videos, it’s competitors like Google and OpenOffice.org as well.
Today may look like February 11 to you and I, but to Iranians it’s 22 Bahman, the anniversary of the declaration of the Islamic Republic of Iran. It’s sorta analagous to the 4th of July here in the U.S., in that it commemorates the “birth,” so to speak, of the country. As such, there’s massive pro- and anti-government demonstrations going on in Tehran. Fun stuff to observe from a safe distance… → Read More
The Iranian government has officially banned the use of Gmail in the country, reports The Wall Street Journal. In place of Google’s email platform, Iran will allow citizens to use a State-sponsored national email service.
The ban coincides with the 31st anniversary of the Islamic Republic, which is expected to draw mass protests and riots from citizens who are both for and against the regime. → Read More
[Ukraine] We know Skype is a great tool. It has over 500 million users worldwide. But even Skype has some feature gaps. In fact Skype has no internal call recording capabilities so that produced a variety of call recorders in the Skype ecosystem – from complex to buggy, from expensive to free. But what is the most common characteristic of the tools? They lock users into the computers they are… → Read More
Orli Yakuel noticed that Google has quietly added a new icon in the ‘Compose Mail’ window of its free webmail service Gmail, enabling users to run search queries from within the interface and insert results and URLs straight into drafted e-mails or open chat conversations.
Google has a funny little blog post today on the Gmail Blog. Apparently, they’ve decided to change the way they’re serving advertisements in Gmail. Why? They say it’s in the name of serving ads that are more relevant to users. But really, it’s fairly obvious that it’s about serving ads that will bring in more money.
In the example they give, Google says that if you previously read an email… → Read More
As you’ve no doubt heard by now, Google is ending its censorship in China and as a result, may have to pull out of the country. As you also may have heard, this is the direct result of the attempted hacking of some Gmail accounts. Google obviously takes its security seriously, and they’ve made that more clear by announcing that all Gmail accounts will now default to the encrypted version of the… → Read More
Short Version: The GBoard costs $19.99. It’s a USB keypad that has nineteen specially labeled keys for specific GMail actions: search, reply, reply all, star, archive, etc. The back of the unit has an adjustable lever so you can change the angle of the keypad. I’m left wondering what problem this accessory solves. → Read More
Gmail is furthering its offline strategy today with the announcement of the ability to include attachments in composed emails when offline. Google says this was one of the most requested features for Offline Gmail and starting today, you be able to attach files in offline mode the way you would in online Gmail.
You’ll be able to attach all types of files except inline images, which are images in… → Read More
“Email is not going to disappear. Possibly ever. Until the robots kill us all.” – Paul Buchheit, creator of Gmail, co-founder of FriendFeed, currently doing vague infrastructure things at Facebook.
Today, at our RealTime CrunchUp event in San Francisco, Buchheit and Threadsy founder Rob Goldman sat down for a chat with our own Steve Gillmor and Erick Schonfeld. The topic was: Can We Kill Email… → Read More
Google is powerful. We all know this, and live with it. But that brings up some interesting concerns when they break into new businesses — will they use that power to give them an unfair advantage? With great power comes great responsibility, and all that. Today brings a totally innocuous example, but it’s still interesting.
A new feature in Gmail Labs allows you to change your contacts’… → Read More
Well, it’s not the mythical Google Drive, but it’s close. For a price. And assuming you only want to store pictures and emails.
Google tonight announced that it was drastically slashing prices while at the same time offering more storage pricing options for users of its services. Specifically, while Gmail users currently get about 7 gigabytes for free and Picasa users get about 1 gigabyte for… → Read More
I haven’t noticed this myself today, but it appears at least a subset of Gmail users are inadvertently drawing closer to an inbox with zero unread e-mails thanks to a nasty bug that marks messages as read even before the user opens them.
You know how I know that we’re reaching the limits of email innovation? Because Gmail is now devoting much of its time to embarrassment prevention in Gmail Labs. The latest is another small, but useful feature that they’re humorously calling: Got the Wrong Bob?
As the name implies, when you turn this feature on in Labs, Gmail will scan an email’s recipients to see if you are accidentally sending… → Read More
We’re now a little over a week into the extended roll-out of the preview build of Google Wave. This is an important time for the service because many people can now finally start using it as they eventually may — which is to say, with their friends and colleagues. Of course, the backlash is also already in full-swing, as expected. But I can’t help but wonder if this backlash and the hype that it… → Read More