Google Kills Inbox by Gmail

Published on March 25, 2019

Google has been hard at work cleaning up some of its lesser known features. When the company announced that it would be getting rid of its social media platform, Google+, last fall, it signaled the beginning of what would be a major shift for the company’s user based services. Google has officially gotten rid of certain Gmail features as of this week.

Users that have logged into apps like Inbox by Gmail this week will have had a short user experience. The apps death was announced back in September along with the death of Google+, but it may have been overshadowed in the wake of that news. The app will now force users to download the regular Gmail app instead.

Inbox by Gmail

Not to worry, Gmail is still alive and well. Google released Inbox by Gmail as a way for users to easily organize their inbox and reply to emails in a hurry. You know, for those types that need to respond to hundreds of emails per day. The app gave users the opportunity to respond with the touch of a button instead of having to type out a response by hand. It’s one of those services that serves a niche audience, which is why Google decided to opt out.

Users may have noticed that services similar to Inbox by Gmail have simply been installed to Gmail’s desktop interface instead. The email platform allows users to easily respond to their mail with the click of a button. Other services like the most annoying version of predictive text to come into fruition have also been added to the list of new features on Gmail. Instead of simply offering these services to the people who want them with something like Inbox by Gmail, Google wanted to make sure we all throw our computers against a wall in frustration.

Google has also made changes to other apps throughout its web services. If This Then That (IFTT) is a service that allows users to automate certain tasks that shouldn’t have to cost you time. For example, it allowed users to send a message that they’re running late to a meeting or send a quick thank you. Now that Google is making changes to how it handles API’s, the service will no longer work with Gmail accounts. IFTT posted this blog post about trying to work with the new Google policies, but things just didn’t work out.

What’s Next?

All of these changes to Google will be finalized on April 2, when the apps and social networking sites shut down for good. Google hasn’t officially said why it decided to make these changes. The company will be launching its own game streaming service in the near future, but that couldn’t have taken so much of its time and energy that it required getting rid of old services.

It’s understandable that the company would want to get rid of Google+ in the first place. The social network never quite took off in the way that the company had hoped it would. Inbox by Google, though, was probably just a move to consolidate all of the Gmail services into one app. Now that Google is focusing on bigger things like gaming, it may have wanted to shift employee efforts into other departments.

Julia Sachs is a former Managing Editor at Grit Daily. She covers technology, social media and disinformation. She is based in Utah and before the pandemic she liked to travel.

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