Gmail Labs has been an interesting place for Google engineers to experiment with new Gmail features. Once Google knows how people react to the new features and how useful they are going to be, they decide to either Graduate or Retire a feature. When a feature is graduated, it is moved into Gmail as a permanent one while a retiring feature is completely removed due to lack of usage or other factors.
Today, Gmail has made 6 more features permanent so don’t be surprised if you suddenly find forgotten attachment detector enabled in your inbox. Here is the complete list of features that Google has graduated from labs:
1. Forgotten Attachment Detector
2. YouTube Previews
3. Custom Label Colors
4. Go To Label
5. Search Auto Complete
6. Vacation Dates
Google usually graduates a feature based on usage and feedback from users. On the other hand, if a feature is not being used much or has received poor feedback, Google retires them from the labs. There are 5 features that have met this faith including Muzzle, Fixed Width Font, Email Addict, Location in Signature and Random Signature. So if you login to your Gmail and don’t see the Take a Break option on top, you know what happened.
Retiring so many features at the same time might make people annoyed a little bit if they used some of them. I believe Google could do it more gradually to make the transition easier. As of now, there doesn’t seem to be any replacement for these 5 features so if you liked any of them you’ll just have to do without it.