Gmail Gets a Whole Bunch of New Features
Article by George Norman
On 03 Nov 2008
Gmail, Google’s approach to email, has been the main focus of Google’s development team, and consequently it has received several new features. The whole purpose behind introducing these features is to make the user experience a more enjoyable one. With that in mind, let’s take a closer look at what Gmail has to offer.

The first cool new thing is that Gmail is available on the G1 handset, or Android, or Google phone, or however you want to call it. As Shakespeare would put it, “what’s in a name?” the important thing is what the Android can do for us, the users. Top put it simply, all the features you loved about Gmail (spam filters, search, labels, stars), can be found in the G1 device. But it doesn’t stop there! You also get real time email notifications, you can view files attached to email messages, address autocomplete helps you with long email addresses, and the push email feature ensures you never have to refresh your browser.

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Keeping with the mobile phone devices theme we’ve got going on here, it must be noted that Gmail is available for Blackberry and J2ME phones as well. Gmail Mobile 2.0 provides you with a means to access your Gmail inbox, your Google Apps, save various mobile drafts, and it even provides offline browsing support. Also, if you have multiple accounts, Gmail can keep an eye on all of them and inform you when you have received a message in your other email accounts.

Gmail Labs has extended its offering – there are now a total of 15 cool new features that you can try out; some are cute, some are funny, and some are actually useful. From the useful range we noted the Canned responses feature, which allows you to send out automated replies to incoming emails. We would have been happy to report a second useful feature, but Google has decided to roll back the SMS feature and release it in the near future.

For those of you that found plain text inexpressive, there are a whole bunch of emoticons that Gmail put at your disposal, so that you can better convey your message. All you have to do is click “Rich formatting” when composing an email, or click the new emoticons tab when chatting – it is as simple as that. Also, if you want to chat with your AIM buddies, Gmail provides a built-in chat list.

Until recently you could only attach 10MB files to your outgoing Gmail messages. This is no longer the case; you are still limited to a certain file size, but now it is 20MB.



Tags: Google, Gmail
About the author: George Norman
George is a news editor.
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