Tag Archives: Gmail

Gmail Priority Inbox’s First Bug, An Invisible YouTube Video

Looks like Google had to rush through to release the Priority Inbox feature to users because of a broken embargo. The release faced a small glitch where a automatic video started playing when a user loaded , apparently only in .

gmail_priority_inbox_rules

This is happening to users for whom Priority Inbox has been enabled for. Here is what the problem users are (or were) facing:

Whenever I sign into my Gmail using Chrome, music automatically starts playing. This is a new issue. It’s like old time dance music. Occasionally there will be a sound effect like a click, a bubble, cards shuffling, a dog growling. There is no music running on my computer. It only occurs in Google Chrome on one of my Gmail accounts, it does not occur in Firefox on anything.

And what was causing it? Apparently this:

Hey, I figured it out. Weirdly, that little "New! Priority Inbox (Beta)" automatically starts playing a youtube video that you can’t see. when you click on it you’ll see that.

It looks like Google employees are aware of this issue are working on a fix as per this thread on Google support forums and the suggested fix is to use for time being (Hotmail Part Deux?). Nevertheless, looks like Google panicked because of the broken embargo by eWeek and rolled out a code with an auto-play YouTube video. Nothing major, but goes to show that even the biggest company can make mistakes in haste.

(h/t @iVinay)

Gmail Priority Inbox Kills Email Overload

Have you ever woken up in the morning and started to get a headache because you have to check your emails? Have you ever had to go through hundreds of unread emails just to find that 10 of them were important. Of course, there are several workflows and filters you can put in place to make sure that you read only important emails, however, none of them might be perfect.

Thankfully, Google might have got something right, because they have managed to build something that would take away the hassle of reading emails everyday. "Priority Inbox" as the service is called is dubbed as a boon for heavy email users.

The service will help people who get hundreds or thousands of emails everyday to easily figure out what is important and what is not by using smart filters and algorithms. Gmail Priority Inbox allows you to split your Inbox into into three sections: Important and unread,Starredand Everything else.

Gmail Priority Inbox

All new messages are scanned as flagged automatically if they are important. Once that is done, you can quickly scan the unread messages to find the important one’s and then check Everything else at a later point of time to see the other messages. This is definitely a powerhouse feature for users like me who receive hundreds of emails throughout the day.

Does it work? Well several lucky users had an opportunity to try the feature and they have all been singing praises of it. TechCrunch Editor Jason Kincaid says that in his experience he never saw an important email slip away into the "Everything else" category, which is definitely very impressive.

Gmail Priority Inbox will be rolled out to users in the next few weeks, this feature will also be available for Google Apps users. Just keep an eye for a new link which says "New! Priority Inbox".

Installing Google Voice And Video Chat in openSUSE

Earlier, Google rolled out an update which added Linux support for Google Talk’s Voice and Video chat. Unfortunately, the update has been packaged only a debian deb file. Fortunately, Jigish Gohil, more popularly known as “CyberOrg” in the openSUSE community has a solution.

The debian package is a archive consisting of the required libraries and a cron job, Jigish has extracted the files and rolled it into a tarball. To install, just download the tarball and extract it to the root folder. To do so, open the Terminal.

Switch to the root user:

su root

Next, use tar to extract and move the files

tar jxvf /path/to/downloaded/file/google-talkplugin.tar.bz2 -C /

Replace /path/to/downloaded/file with the location at which you downloaded the file. Restart your browsers, and you should be ready to start talking!

Update:

Google now provides an RPM package, just head over to the Download page and select the required file.

Google Brings Voice And Video Chat to Linux

After a long, long time – Google finally has introduced Voice & Video chat for Linux. Now while trying to start a Voice or Video chat, instead of showing “This system is not supported” – you get redirected to Google’s Chat download page.

Clicking on the “Install button” will ¬†prompt you to download the Debian package file.

Google Video Chat package download

Once saved, just double click on the file to launch the package manager, and click  on install to Install the plugin.

Google Talk Video Chat Plugin

Once installed, just restart your browser and you’re all set to start video chatting in Linux!

The bad news that currently, only debs are packaged, which means RPM based distro users will have to wait a little bit longer.

1 Million Calls Made Through Gmail In Past 24 Hours

It is barely 24 hours since Google announced the Gmail Phone Call service through Google Voice and it has already made a record of sorts with over 1 million calls being placed in the past 24 hours.

Gmail 1 Million Calls

The volume of calls was tweeted through the official @google account on . The volume of calls though surprising might have been because Google is allowing free phone calls to US and Canada for US users, with users from other countries also being able to call US for free.

There is no indication by Google as to how many phone calls were paid, however, it would be interesting to know those numbers as it would show whether users are only using this service because it is free or whether they are actually using it to call other countries too.

Nevertheless, 1 million phone calls in 24 hours definitely looks like a success for Google and it would be interesting to see how much of a market share they can capture from other players like Skype. One thing is definite, once Google has this service integrated for mobile phones through Google Voice the volume of calls will be much larger.

Gmail Phone Calls Official, Call Rates Pretty Low

Earlier today we told you about Google planning to offer phone calls through Google Talk in Gmail and now Google has officially announced that users will . As I had said, this feature is tightly integrated with Google Voice and is offering free phone calls in U.S and Canada, at least till the rest of the year.

Gmail Phone Call

Calling rates to several countries are pretty low, for example calling India using Gmail would cost you 6 cents per minute to both landlines and mobile phones, calling to UK is about 2cents. This is on par or a bit higher than several calling cards available in the United States. You will find all the calling rates at this page.

Google will use your Google Voice account number as the outbound caller ID. You can also receive calls made to your Google Voice number within Gmail after following these instructions. You will need to install a voice and video plugin for your browser, which can be downloaded from http://gmail.com/call

The new calling button is integrated into Google Chat, and users can click on "Call phone" at the top of the chat list and dial a number or enter a contact’s name from your Google contacts.  This feature will be rolled out to US based Gmail users in the next few days.

Gmail Phone Calls

Update: I got to try this feature out in my account and it worked pretty well. I tried calling my own number and several others and the voice quality was excellent.

Gmail May Soon Get Phone Calling, Preparing a Skype Killer?

is no doubt one of the best email service available online, and Google has been adding several features which are not only useful but have also changed the way people have been using online email.

gmail_phone_calling

In the past Gmail has added an ability to send SMS messages to users in chat or Google Talk, and now according to reports from Cnet News, Google is preparing to add the ability to call people using Google Talk.

The new feature will make use of VoIP (Voice over Internet Protocol) similar to what Skype does to allow users to call other users in US and Canada for free and charge for international calls. According to the information available it would be much lower than the charges you pay to your phone carrier and might even be lower than Skype.

The new feature could be an integration of Gizmo into Google Talk, which Google had purchased in November 2009. It would be interesting to see whether Google integrates this service with Google Voice and allows users to create a number that users could call in and answer the calls using Google Chat.

Skype which is the leader in VoIP calls offers similar service, however, the voice and video quality of Skype is much better than Gmail. Nevertheless, it might not take Google much time to build a solution which rivals Skype or is even better than them.

Earlier last month, a Google Voice Desktop application had leaked which gave users the ability to users to make and receive calls from their desktop. I would definitely want to see this integrated with Google Voice, which would mean that I could use Google Voice on my phone and then use it as a primary way to make or receive calls without having to pay exorbitant charges to my carrier. However, that dream could be a long shot, since there is so much at stake. What do you think?

(Source: Cnet News)

Gmail “Undo Send” Duration Now Up to 30 Seconds

Gmail Labs

Gmail has a nifty little feature called “Undo Send” in Gmail Labs which allows you to unsend emails after you have sent them. You could unsend emails for up to 5 seconds until now, as Gmail delayed the emails for 5 seconds before it actually sent them. This gave Gmail an easy way to handle the huge email traffic flowing through its servers and also provided a nice feature to its users. It has helped me a lot of times by allowing me to unsend my emails and correct them in case there were any mistakes.

Google now allows you to dial the delay duration up to 30 seconds. You can change the “Send Cancellation Period” to 5, 10, 20 or 30 seconds by visiting Gmail > Settings > General > Undo Send.

Gmail Labs Undo Send

Search Google Docs and Sites in Gmail

Gmail has introduced a new feature in which allows users to search for data in your linked and Google Sites account from within Gmail.

Google Docs and Sites Search for Gmail

The "Apps Search" lab feature extends search with Google Docs and Sites results. It will find the most relevant docs and sites and show them below the Gmail search results. The feature is definitely interesting and will allow users to quickly find documents and pages from the other services.

However, the feature does not seem to be working fully right now as my searches did not return results from my Google Docs account. This might be because Gmail might take some time to index all the files in the Google Docs and Sites account.

To enable the feature go to your Google Labs tab in Settings (click here) and scroll down till you see a header for "Available Labs". Under this header enable the "Apps Search" feature and save your settings.

The next time you use Gmail to search for something, you will also be show results from your Google Docs and Google Sites account.

(h/t @steverubel via @Orli)

Schedule Emails in Gmail and De-Clutter Your Inbox With Boomerang

One feature which I miss in Gmail is the ability to schedule emails so that they go out at a certain time. Scheduling emails is similar to scheduling tweets in but scheduling emails have a lot more advantages. One of them is that you get an opportunity to review and correct mistakes in your messages before they go out (which do happen at times).

Gmail does not allow you to schedule emails as of now, and they might not do that in near future. However, Gmail does offer users with an option to undo send a message for up to 20 seconds. Nevertheless, it would always be nice to have a feature which would allow you to schedule your email messages too.

Schedule Email in Gmail

In comes Boomerang, a and which allows you to schedule email messages to go out after a certain period. As you can see from the screenshot above, Boomerang allows you to schedule messages to go out after a set time and even allows you to schedule an exact time for the message to go out.

Once you schedule the message, Boomerang will store the email headers on their servers and send it out at the specified time. Pretty neat solution for an online email service.

De-Clutter Gmail Inbox

Boomerang’s usability does not just end with scheduling email messages in Gmail, it also allows you to de-clutter your Inbox by hiding certain emails and only displaying it after a certain time. For example, if you get an email from someone about something you have to do tomorrow, you might star that email or add it to your TODO list. However, Boomerang will allow you to hide the email message for now and show it in your Inbox at a specified time.

This can come in very handy when you receive a bill and have to pay it after few days, you can have Boomerang show that message in your Inbox after few days so that you remember to pay the bill on time.

Techie Buzz Verdict

techie-buzz-recommended-software[1]

Boomerang would cause several users to freak out about privacy since it has full access to your emails. However, the company makes it clear that they only store the email headers of a message on their servers so that they can identify it, and do not store the email body.

Other than that, Boomerang adds a very impressive feature to the already impressive Gmail and also helps you to de-clutter your Inbox and view important messages when you want to. Overall we would highly suggest our readers to try this out.

Though Boomerang is invite only, the link below might allow you to download the extension for Google Chrome and Firefox.

Rating: 4.5/5 (Excellent)

Update: Download link no longer works, just head over to http://www.baydin.com/boomerang4gmail/ and use the invite code “techiebuzz” without the quotes to download the extension.

Download Boomerang [via TNW]