Category: Gmail | Jul 30, 2012
Posted by Fred Brewin, Product Manager
Since the introduction of Gmail video chat back in 2008, many of you have told us that you love the direct, personal communication it provides. That’s why we’re excited to announce that video chat is being upgraded to a more modern video calling technology — Google+ Hangouts.
Unlike the old video chat, which was based on peer-to-peer technology, Hangouts utilize the power of Google’s network to deliver higher reliability and enhanced quality. You’ll be able to chat with all the same people you did before and, in fact, with Hangouts you’ll now be able to reach them not only when they are using Gmail but also if they are on Google+ in the browser or on their Android or iOS devices.
All Gmail users will benefit from this upgrade, but if you and the person you’re chatting with also use Google+, you’ll get even more from the Hangouts experience. You’ll be able to video chat with up to nine people at once, watch YouTube videos together, collaborate on Google documents and share your screen. Plus, Hangouts has a bunch of fun effects that you can try out…because any conversation is better when you’re wearing a virtual mustache or pirate hat.
We’ll be rolling out Hangouts in Gmail starting today and then gradually over the coming weeks. We hope you enjoy hanging out with your friends and family. Arrrgh!
Category: Gmail | Jun 27, 2012
Posted by Michelle Chen, Software Engineer
Today at Google I/O, we announced Google+ Events, a new way to create, capture and share public and private events. Google+ Events are seamlessly integrated with Google Calendar to simplify the planning process, so you’ll always know when you have something coming up.
When creating a Google+ event, you can check your Google Calendar to make sure you pick the best time to party. Google+ events also sync to your mobile device’s calendar, so you can have them handy when you are on the go.
In week and day views in Calendar, you’ll recognize Google+ Events by the event owner’s profile picture. When you click to expand the event in Calendar, it displays a beautiful theme and allows you to set reminders, see other guests, and respond to the event.
Clicking ‘View on Google+’ takes you to the event page, where you can exchange comments with other guests, view photos, and more. Learn about Google+ Events here, and see our post on the Official Google Blog.
Category: Gmail | Jun 25, 2012
Posted by Jason Parachoniak, Software Engineer
Our team has been working hard to bring your most-requested features to the Gmail app for iOS. Today, we’re excited to add three new improvements to that list of updates: full notification center support, the ability to send messages from your alternate email addresses and an improved login experience.
First up, Gmail is now fully integrated with Notification Center and supports banners, alerts and lock screen options. Plus, notifications are now incredibly fast — up to 5x faster than in the previous version.
Next, you now have the option to send mail from alternate email addresses. If you have configured alternate sender addresses in Gmail on your desktop under Settings->Accounts->Send mail as you will see a From: option when composing new messages in the app.
Lastly, we’ve improved the login process to allow you to stay logged into the app for as long as you’d like. You can still choose to sign out of your account, but you won’t be automatically logged out after a certain period of time has elapsed.
We’ll continue to improve the app, and we’re looking forward to bringing you more features in future releases, including support for multiple accounts.
Category: Gmail | Jun 20, 2012
Posted by Mark Striebeck, Engineer Director
As a German working on the Gmail team, my friends and family back home often ask why they have a @googlemail address instead of @gmail.com. Today, I’m happy to announce that is no longer the case: Google Mail is becoming Gmail in Germany. To celebrate, we’ve created a video that explains what it’s like to Go Google in German:
All new accounts will receive an @gmail.com address and if you have an existing @googlemail.com address, you’ll soon be able to switch to @gmail.com. Once you make the change, you will still receive mail sent to your @googlemail.com address and all of your emails, contacts, and account settings will stay exactly the same. Plus, you can switch back at any time if you change your mind.
For more details, check out our FAQ. If you’re ready to make the change, over the next few weeks, a link will appear at the top when you login over the coming weeks.
Category: Gmail | Jun 19, 2012
Posted by Greg Bullock, Software Engineer
Themes have been an important part of Gmail ever since we launched them back in 2008. Not only do they let you personalize your inbox with fun backgrounds, but they’re also practical, helping you easily differentiate between multiple Gmail inboxes (e.g. work and personal).
When we unveiled Gmail’s new look back in November, we introduced a number of new, beautiful HD themes. We also heard that many of you wanted to bring an even more personal touch by setting your own background. So over the next couple of days we are rolling out a new Custom themes section with two options, Light and Dark where you can do just that. Watch the video to see some examples:
You can upload your own images directly, select from your Google+ photos or simply paste any image URL. Or, if you don’t have a particular image in mind, you can browse our searchable Featured Photos section to find one that speaks to you. With so many great options, it may be hard to choose, so to get a sense of the images available, try searching for ‘hdr scenery’ or ‘bokeh wallpaper’ in the Featured tab.
Whether you want to bask on a tropical island or simply reminisce about last year’s holiday with the family, your Gmail can now be customized to your mood. Find your perfect image and make your Gmail your own with custom themes.
Category: Gmail | May 24, 2012
Posted by Chris Yang, Product Manager, Translator Toolkit
Languages can provide identity, pride, a sense of belonging and spiritual guidance to communities. We hope that by making Gmail available in both majority and minority languages, more people will be able to share their culture and knowledge with others worldwide. Today, we’re very excited to announce that Gmail is now available in Welsh and Latin American Spanish. You can select Welsh and Latin American Spanish as your default language in Settings:
Welsh, as a living language, is used by an increasing number of speakers, in their everyday life. For this project, we’d like to thank the Welsh Language Commissioner for working with us to make Gmail available to Welsh speakers around the world. The project was completed through Google Translator Toolkit, which is a Computer-Aided Translation tool supporting over 100,000 language combinations.
Spanish is spoken by more than 300 million people in the Americas and the Caribbean. The Latin American Spanish version of Gmail is designed to be a closer match to the expectations of Spanish speakers in the Americas.
These two languages bring the total number of supported languages in Gmail to 56.
Category: Gmail | May 21, 2012
Posted by Isaac Elias, Software Engineer
When we built Gmail, we wanted to bring that same great search experience Google is known for to email. And today, we are making that experience even better by improving the autocomplete predictions you see when you search in Gmail.
Now when you type something into the Gmail search box, the autocomplete predictions will be tailored to the content in your email, so you can save time and get the information you want faster than ever before. For example, you might now get lax reservation or lax united as predictions after typing “lax” if you have received an email with a flight confirmation for your trip to Los Angeles in your inbox recently.
We will be rolling out improved autocomplete in English over the next few days and will follow with more languages over the next few months. While initially improved autocomplete will not be available for Google Apps customers, we plan to bring this feature to Apps domains in the future.
Category: Gmail | May 16, 2012
Posted by Itamar Gilad, Product Manager
Email is more than just messages going back and forth — it’s also about the people sending them. That’s why today we’re introducing changes that continue to bring people front and center in Gmail, just as we did with profile photos in conversation view, the people widget and last year’s integrations with Google+. Today’s changes include quick access to contact details when viewing past conversations as well as improved integration with Google+ circles.
Quick access to contact details
When you search for an email address, the search results will now show you contact details in addition to that person’s profile photo and the emails sent from and to them. From here, you can start a chat, call their phone and more. Plus, if your contacts have a Google+ profile, this information will stay up to date automatically.
You can get to these same results in a variety of ways including from the people widget, contacts and the chat list search menu.
Improved circle integration and circle search
In addition to adding contact details to search results, we’ve made some improvements to the circles integration announced in December. When you select a circle, you’ll now see profile photos of people in that circle at the top right of the page. Plus, when you click on these images you’ll be taken directly to search results with contact details.
Circles are also now supported in search and filters. Find messages from a specific circle by typing circle:[circle name] in the search box. You can also find mail from any of your circled contacts by searching with has:circle. You can refine your search even further with other criteria and create filters based on circles. This means you can now view all the unread emails from your ‘Friends’ circle or automatically star every message that comes from your ‘VIP’ circle.
These updates are helping us to provide a more consistent, beautiful experience across all of our products. Quick access to contact details will be rolling out to everyone today. To take advantage of circles and more in Gmail, you’ll need to join Google+.
Category: Gmail | May 15, 2012
Posted by Erin Reilly, Google Green team
If you’re anything like me, you send and receive a lot of emails every day. But have you ever wondered where your message goes after you hit “send?” How does an email travel from your computer to your friend’s smartphone across the country or around the world?
We’re answering those questions with Story of Send, a new site that gives you a behind-the-scenes look into how all that virtual information makes its journey through the real world—from your Internet service provider to our data centers and beyond. Along the way, you’ll discover everything from where we filter for spam and scan for viruses to how we’re minimizing our impact on the environment through energy efficiency and renewable power.
We’ve included videos and photos throughout the journey so you can explore certain areas more deeply. For example, if you’re curious what data center servers look like, we’ve included some photos. Or you can watch a video to learn about how we purchase clean energy from wind farms near our data centers. And because technology doesn’t always have to be serious, you might find a vampire or two lurking around or uncover other surprises on the journey.
In the past, Gmail fans have shown us how emails connect people across the world. Now we’re providing a glimpse into how those emails go from one place to another. So hit send and start the journey today.
Cross-posted from the Official Google Blog
Category: Gmail | May 9, 2012
Posted by Preston Hershorn, Product Marketing Manager
If you are a frequent visitor to the Gmail blog, there’s a good chance you’re already a Gmail ninja. Maybe you use video chat in Gmail to keep in touch with family when you’re on the road. Perhaps you’ve created a superb organizational system with labels and Priority Inbox and even have a colorful theme to say “this inbox is mine.”
Sound familiar? If so, then you’ve seen the benefits of going Google. But we all know someone who hasn’t yet made the switch, and is missing out on the convenience of having email, chat, video, and calling all together in one place.
So, as part of our effort to let users know all the things they can do by going Google, we’ve put together a short video that shows just how easy it is to get things done with Gmail when you are living in the cloud. Take a look and then share it with one of your friends. They might just be the next person to go Google – and they’ll have you to thank!