Gmail (Finally) Adds A Contact Chooser

Gmail's auto-complete is convenient when you know exactly who you're writing to, but adding lesser-known or oddly named contacts can be a pain. Gmail's new pop-up contact chooser makes digging your contacts' depths far less painful.

A click-to-pick contact chooser has long been a rare advantage of desktop email clients over Gmail in the interface department, and it's nice to see Gmail close that gap. Click on the To, CC or BCC links in a compose window, and you can add contacts, or pre-sorted groups, to your message recipients—without having to save a draft, head to contacts, copy a name, then head back to drafts. Pick the wrong name? Click on the contact name again to remove them.

Most convenient of all is the search function in the contact chooser, and the ability to select all the results that come up from a particular search. That makes it easy to, say, pick everyone you know from the Rochester Institute of Technology by searching and picking everyone who comes up.

The big irk that some are noting is that Gmail's contact chooser opens in a new window, confounding Firefox users that have relegated new windows to tabs, and forcing those with pop-up blockers to set them to allow Gmail's chooser through. If you've found a convenient work-around to the pop-up window, let us know in the comments.

Composing a message? Try the contact chooser [Official Gmail Blog via Google Operating System]


    This feature came out really late, really disappointed in Google Engineers. Yahoo! Mail already have beaten Google to it. This feature should be available for the users since day one, not years later. Shockingly the Google engineers get paid so much money but could not think of something so little, the little feature should have been there since the birth of GMail (Google) Mail.

    Shame they couldn't do it like Hotmail's contact chooser where you can just click a drop down arrow and your contact list shows up in a list instead. But still glad that they FINALLY added it. Long overdue. I haven't had a problem though with the window being blocked off by Firefox's pop up blocker.

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