After leaking earlier today, Google has now confirmed that Gmail is getting a big upgrade that includes Google Chat and Meet. Dubbed “a better home for work,” Google’s focus with this move was to integrate a bunch of their services together for G Suite users to keep everything easily accessible within a single place.
The new version of Gmail really is an integrated workspace where you you’ll even find files and tasks along with those services I mentioned above, like your email, chats, and meetings. But most importantly, Google has confirmed that on Android and iOS, you’ll soon find Chat built into the app, just like Meet is supposed to be. Of course, the web is getting all of this with added functionality.
The new Gmail app on your phone will look like the image at the top of this post, with a bottom bar that features shortcuts for Mail, Chat, Rooms, and Meet. Rooms, for those confused, is a Chat feature that lets multiple people both within and outside of an organization join a topic or project, and share files and tasks and messages specific to it.
That’s not all we are getting, though. Google built-in co-editing of documents into Gmail (likely just on the web for now), they are incorporating Chat messages into Gmail’s search, letting you pin important rooms, set your availability to “Do Not Disturb” and/or have an “Out of office,” and more.
Google says that this new Gmail will expand to G Suite customers “over the following weeks” and you can sign-up here to try and get in.
How will this all affect regular Gmail users? We’re doing our best to find out.
// Google Cloud