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Gmail turns 15 and celebrates by unveiling new features

Wed 3 Apr 2019
FYI, this story is more than a year old

After being introduced as part of Google’s G Suite back in 2004, Gmail has now progressed to become one of the most dominant email platforms on the market.

Email has become the life blood of modern business. When it first began, Gmail disrupted the market with 1GB of free storage and Google search built right in – below is a shot of what it used to look like.

“Gmail continues to help people manage their work and personal lives with the help of useful innovations—from priority inbox, smart labels and spam filtering to Smart Reply, Smart Compose and nudges—all the while ensuring that email remains a safe, secure, and user-friendly experience for all,” says G Suite product management director Jacob Bank.

“Today, as we celebrate 15 years of innovation in Gmail, we’re excited to announce new features that promise to bring even greater efficiency and assistance.”

First up is a renovation of its Smart Compose feature, a tool used to speed up email composition for an increasingly mobile workforce. In fact, a report from IDC forecasts that by 2020 mobile workers will account for nearly three-quarters (72.3 percent) of the U.S. workforce.

“Smart Compose already saves people from typing over 1 billion characters each week on the web, and we’re excited to bring the productivity power of Smart Compose to Android devices (with iOS coming soon) and four new languages: Spanish, French, Italian and Portuguese,” says Bank

“In addition, Smart Compose can now adapt to the way you write. For example, if you prefer to greet your teams with a friendly, “Hey team,” it can help you stay true to your voice. It can even suggest a subject line based on the body of the message you’ve written.”

The second feature that Google announced is the ability to schedule emails.

“We understand that work can often carry over to non-business hours, but it’s important to be considerate of everyone’s downtime,” says Bank.

“We want to make it easier to respect everyone’s digital well-being, so we’re adding a new feature to Gmail that allows you to choose when an email should be sent. Just write your email as you normally would, then schedule it to arrive in your recipient’s inbox at a later date and time.”

Thirdly, Google reiterated a commitment it made recently to make email more dynamic, interactive, and actionable.

“Now, you can quickly take action on email—like respond to a comment thread in Google Docs, schedule a meeting, or fill out a questionnaire—right from within the message itself,” says Bank.

“This makes it easier to stay focused on the task at hand since you won’t have to open a new tab or leave your inbox. We’re also making it possible for info within an email to be kept up-to-date, so the content is always accurate no matter when you look at it.”

Looking forward, Bank says there is plenty of innovation to come.

“Email is at the heart of what drives businesses,” says Bank.

“Whether you’ve used Gmail for the past 15 years or for the past 15 days, we want to thank you for taking this journey with us and we look forward to making email even smarter and more useful for you.”

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