Gmail today announced that a new feature now allows Google+ users to respond to Google+ email notifications right from their inbox. The image above shows how Google+ email notifications will now look for users of Gmail. These changes have already begun rolling out, and will continue to be implemented for Google+ users throughout the week.
The announcement came on the Official Gmail Blog, where Zohair Hyder, a Google software engineer, detailed the tighter Gmail integration with Google+. Gmail users can now view, comment on, and +1 posts from inside their inboxes. Any further replies to the Google+ post will also appear in the Gmail notification message. Google+ users who don't have Gmail can still reply to a Google+ email notification, as seen in the image below. The reply will be immediately posted to Google+.
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These features seem nice, if a bit unnecessary. Any user that is logged into Gmail will have Google+ notifications at the top of the page, and can reply there. The email replies could benefit some feature phone users or those smartphone users who have an email app on their mobile devices, but not a Google+ app. Mostly, the changes seem to be about Google's current drive to more tightly integrate all of their services, which has not gone over well with everyone. Wil Wheaton, for example.
What do you think? Will you use these Gmail features? Are they necessary? Leave a comment below and let us know.