Gmail Gets a New Label Feature

    September 25, 2009
    Chris Crum

Today Google introduced a new Gmail Labs feature, which lets users hide labeled messages that have already been read, when browsing through labels. The ones that have been read can be found under the "more" menu.

"A lot of people want to see their labels in order to see which ones have unread messages, but they don’t want a long list of label names cluttering up the left hand side of their inboxes," says Gmail software engineer David de Kloet.

Hide Read Labels in Gmail"This is particularly handy if you use your inbox as a to-do list where unread messages are the outstanding things you need to take care of," adds de Kloet. "If you use that method along with labels like "Home" and "Project X," it’s easy to see all your to-dos in context. With this Labs feature on, labels with outstanding to-dos will be bold and have a number next to them; everything else will be hidden in the "11 more" section."

The feature can be accessed by turning it on from the labs tab under Settings.

Hide Read Labels in Gmail
Gmail has a number of other label-related features that users can turn on in the labs section. They have "customre label colors," which let you create your own combination of colors for labels. The "go to label" feature lets users enable keyword shortcuts "g" and I’ to display a popup for selecting a label to go to. The "multiple inboxes" feature lets you add extra lists of emails in your inbox. New lists of threads can be labels, starred messages, drafts, or other searches. The "hide unread counts" lets you hide the number of unread messages in your labels. The "hide labels from subjects" feature lets you eliminate labels from subjects to save space on smaller screens.

That last one might be of particular interest to a number of Gmail users, now that Google has announced the push for iPhone feature, which allows users to sync their Gmail accounts to thier iPhones.