Bad news for fans of innovative email systems: Inbox by Gmail is shutting down, less than four years after it first saw the light of day. If you’re a deeply invested Inbox user, where can you find the same sorts of features and tools beyond next March? We’ve got some ideas.
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A few years ago a friend told me about Streak, a Gmail extension that allows you to track whether your email has been opened. For me it was a game changer, simply because it allowed me to have some concept of whether or not a message had made it to the person I intended or had gotten stuck in a spam folder in cyberspace somewhere.
Gmail's Smart Replies feature, now cemented into the service's latest design update for desktop clients, are a great way to send pithy responses when you don't feel like typing out a real one. Sure, they might annoy recipients; and you might even tap the wrong reply, inadvertently telling your boss "love it!" when he or she asks you to put in some extra work this weekend. But aren't they convenient?
Whenever you click that easy "Sign in With Google" button on a company's website, you're granting the app or service access to some of your information. While in some cases that might just be access to your name and email address, for others you're giving that company the ability to read your email as well.
You may have noticed that the most recent Chrome browser update includes a change to the way Chrome syncs — or, more accurately, doesn’t sync — to your Google account. Specifically, if you sign into or out of Gmail, your Google account will be signed into or out of the Google Sync Chrome browser automatically.
If that happens, your bookmarks, saved passwords and other synced data won’t be accessible until you sign back in manually, not to mention it forcibly signs you out of every other Google service as well.
Android/iOS: In April, Google brought a new confidential mode to Gmail’s desktop version, allowing you to send emails that automatically expire. The idea being that if you use Gmail to send confidential information (which let’s face it, isn’t the safest idea), then using the confidential mode will make that decision a little bit safer.
All browsers: Google and Dropbox are now collaborating on a brand-new "Dropbox add-on for Gmail", which will make it easy to share the contents of your Dropbox directly within Gmail. If you're going the other way, it's also a lot easier to dump files directly into your Dropbox, saving you the step of having to pull up your Downloads folder and manually drag the file over yourself.
There are many reasons you might want to back up your Gmail account, such as: It’s good to have a copy of your most-important data; you’re about to be fired from your job and you want to save everything you did; you’d just like a little extra protection in case someone hacks your account and takes it over (or deletes it).
It will come as no surprise that, as the editor of a website devoted to productivity, I'm obsessive about refining the details of my tech life to be certain every element is helping me get the job done. While I have software that I swear by (WriteRoom, Deckset, Evernote), I'm more of an evangelist for browser extensions.
My favourite Chrome extensions are lightweight, easy-to-install and usually free, but the effect they have on my productivity is profound. These are the extensions that I love most fervently and recommend most frequently.
One of Gmail's cool new features is the "nudge", which moves certain emails to the top of your inbox and suggests you take action. This is actually two features: Gmail asks if you want to reply to received email and if you want to follow up on sent email.
To be honest, I'm not sure what different swipes do on your favourite email app, because every app is a little bit different. And it's possible that you don't like how your favourite email app handles swiping. Maybe you'd rather delete messages than archive them; maybe you just like swiping in one direction over another.
Google has a long history of introducing, then forgetting about, and finally officially killing off its products. Most recently, that included Google Spaces, a service that most of us never knew existed to begin with. Let's take a tour of some of our favourite services Google's killed off over the years.
A few weeks ago Google announced a host of updates and tweaks to Gmail, including the ability to read and respond to messages while you're offline. A number of the changes were made live then, but that offline mode wasn't quite ready. Last week during the company's annual developer conference, Google officially made offline mode available for Gmail users. Here's how to give it a try
Yesterday, our sister site Gizmodo posted a story about one of Gmail's new tools: Snoozing, the ability to put your emails to bed until you're well and ready to deal with them. It was described as a "terrible idea" but I'm here to tell you that Snoozing is one of my favourite features - if you use it appropriately.