Gmail Does Something It Should’ve Done A Long Time Ago

    March 19, 2009
    Chris Crum

Gmail has been all about improving usability lately. Most recently they’ve announced a big improvement in this area fixing a problem that has annoyed countless emailers including Googlers themselves.

You know how when you get more than one conversation going based on one message, you don’t always have time to read each new one? It can get pretty confusing when trying to remember which ones still need to be read when you go back to them. If you mark the whole thing as unread, then you have to wade through the ones you’ve already read.

It’s almost as if Google was reading my mind because I was annoyed by this very thing only yesterday, and shortly after that they made the announcement that they were fixing this.

"Now if you’re reading a conversation that had unread messages when you opened it and you mark it unread, Gmail will only mark those messages that were unread when you opened the conversation in the first place," explains Softare Engineer David de Kloet. "It’s a small change, but it’s the little things that can make a UI feel right or wrong, and we hope this makes Gmail a little bit more right."

I haven’t dealt with the issue again yet, but I’d say it’s definitely a step in the right direction. de Kloet notes that the feature only works for desktop browsers and not phones at this point.

Hitwise recently reported that Gmail had surpassed YouTube in visits recently. Gmail use should only continue to grow as Google continues to make tweaks to its usability.

Gmail Surpasses YouTube

As of a week ago, Gmail was number 10 in the rankings of most popular sites in all categories according to Hitwise. Yahoo Mail is number 2. Gmail is number 2 among Google properties.