Your Gmail Feature Wishlist?

Your Gmail Feature Wishlist?

Once upon a time, gigabytes of storage space and message labels and IMAP access in web-based email was unheard of—until Gmail raised the industry bar and user expectations of what you get with your free webmail account. But now that we’re all used to Gmail’s goodness, it’s time to cast a critical eye at the little niggly things that are missing from Gmail’s web client. This week I spent two hours wrestling two Gmail accounts to the ground trying to hack together a filtered auto-response that only goes to certain annoying senders. (The approach worked for Adam back in the day, but it was a no-go for me.) The futile exercise made me think of just a few features I wish Gmail had built-in, but doesn’t. Namely:

  • A filtered auto-response that only goes out to incoming email that meets certain criteria (from certain senders, etc.)
  • A vacation auto-responder that responds to every incoming message, whether it’s to the main Gmail address you set up or others you mapped to it.
  • Outgoing email filters.
  • A way to control whether every person you ever send mail to goes into your Contacts list. (And better contact management overall.)
  • A way to see each messages’ size and search on that.

A good email client like Thunderbird (or even Outlook!) has all these features. Because I love Gmail, I want it to have them, too. What are your most wished-for, gaping holes in Gmail’s feature set? Post ’em up in the comments.


  • I love the Google spam filtering. In the year or so I’ve had a gmail account, I’ve seen the catch % rise from about 50% to just about 100%. What I would like to see is the option of having the spam automatically ‘marked as read’ so I dont even see it referred to in the spam folder. Then it can mould away quietly until Google deletes it in due course.

  • I agree. What bums me is that I’ve synched my Thunderbird and Gmail, and when I’m in Gmail, I never see the spam because it gets sent to the spam folder. But the spam preferences don’t map to Tbird, so I do see it all there. Ugh.

Log in to comment on this story!