Gmail gets small update

October 30, 2012

Google is previewing a small change that will affect every e-mail that you write, the company announced Tuesday.

The company made a change to the “Compose” button, which now opens in a pop-up window similar to the way the company displays chats. The change, Google product manager Phil Sharp said, will make it easier to reference old e-mails while composing new ones.

“We’re always trying to make Gmail faster and easier to use, so today we’re introducing a completely redesigned compose and reply experience that does just that,” Sharp wrote.

With the new design, users will be able to keep an eye on their inboxes, reference older e-mails and conduct searches while still writing a new e-mail. You can also minimize a new message in the same way you can minimize chats — meaning that you can keep multiple draft e-mails in front of you at a time.

Google is also making some changes to the address line. Users can easily drag names between the “to” “cc” and “bcc” fields — much the way that users can on mobile mail clients — and pictures will show up next to the names of people in your address book as you type.

Both of the address line features were already present in Sparrow, the popular third-party mail client that Google purchased earlier this year.

Sharp said that Google will be previewing the new design to some users and rolling it out to everyone in the coming weeks.

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Hayley Tsukayama covers consumer technology for The Washington Post.
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