IoT
IoT
Software // Productivity/Collaboration Apps
News
2/18/2016
12:05 PM
50%
50%

Google Gmailify: Gmail On Yahoo, Outlook

Google looks to bring some of Gmail's most popular features to users of other email accounts, including Yahoo Mail and Microsoft's Outlook.com.

7 Hot Advances In Email Security
7 Hot Advances In Email Security
(Click image for larger view and slideshow.)

Google is reaching out to users who want some of Gmail's more noteworthy features, like spam protection and inbox organization, but don't want to go through the hassle of changing their email address. The new service is called Gmailify.

Gmailify links a user's existing account to Gmail so that one has access to all the features -- spam protection, inbox organization, and even Google Now cards based on the email address -- without the user having to leave the current address behind.

Anyone who uses Yahoo Mail or Microsoft's Outlook.com (formerly Hotmail), now has the option to Gmailify their inbox. All that a user needs to do is open the Gmail app, sign in to the email account, or accounts, and enable Gmailify.

When users sign in to the linked Gmail address, they'll see their messages from the other email provider in their mailbox, and will be able to read, reply, and organize those as they do in Gmail.

(Image: Google)

(Image: Google)

When you read an email sent to your non-Gmail address, it will also be marked as read in the non-Gmail mailbox. When you go through the process of linking your account, you can choose which "From:" address to use for replies to email sent to your non-Gmail account.

Other features that come with Gmailify include faster search using advanced search operators, and travel and hotel reservations, which appear automatically in Google Now.

The announcement is actually an expansion of an existing feature on Google's Gmail app for Android app, which allowed users to manage their mail from non-Gmail accounts, such as Yahoo and Outlook, since 2015.

"Of course, you're always in control -- so if you ever change your mind, you can unlink your account(s) at any time, and continue to access them through the Gmail app without using Gmailify," Michael Käser, software engineer at Google, wrote in a Feb. 17 blog post announcing Gmailify.

Käser also noted that Google is planning to add other email providers to Gmailify in the future.

The company isn't the only one looking to make linking multiple email accounts an easier process. In December, Yahoo announced it was giving its users the ability to connect their Gmail and Google Apps account to Yahoo Mail, a move that followed their earlier introduction of multiple mailbox management for Outlook.com, Hotmail, and AOL Mail.

In essence, it's Gmailify in reverse -- making Yahoo Mail's search, smart contacts, compose features, and Yahoo Account Key for password-free sign-in available with Gmail.

Google's announcement also coincides with another development in the email space: Microsoft took the latest version of Outlook.com out of preview and will be rolling out the new experience to millions of users each week.

[Read about Amazon's new email service.]

The new Outlook.com is built on an Office 365-based infrastructure. It includes newly added features, such as a smarter address book that understands who users talk to the most, and the ability to add flight confirmations to the calendar automatically.

Outlook.com is also integrated with Office, with a side-by-side editing feature designed to simplify managing edits in an attachment.

In addition, users can now view or edit Word, PowerPoint, and Excel documents and photos while simultaneously replying to the original message.

Does your company offer the most rewarding place to work in IT? Do you know of an organization that stands out from the pack when it comes to how IT workers are treated? Make your voice heard. Submit your entry now for InformationWeek's People's Choice Award. Full details and a submission form can be found here.

Nathan Eddy is a freelance writer for InformationWeek. He has written for Popular Mechanics, Sales & Marketing Management Magazine, FierceMarkets, and CRN, among others. In 2012 he made his first documentary film, The Absent Column. He currently lives in Berlin. View Full Bio

Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
Comments
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View
shamika
50%
50%
shamika,
User Rank: Ninja
2/21/2016 | 9:50:41 PM
Re: Very intersting move by Google
I agree with you. I think the features on Gmail are much better than the other email accounts.
shamika
50%
50%
shamika,
User Rank: Ninja
2/21/2016 | 9:48:29 PM
Re: Very intersting move by Google
This is amazing.  However is this secured enough to access all email from one account.
jastroff
50%
50%
jastroff,
User Rank: Ninja
2/19/2016 | 1:54:10 PM
Re: Very intersting move by Google
@mejiac,

Good point -- MSFT is a more likely candidate to buy Yahoo Mail, and fill up its free Outlook coffers. Either way, I think it will be messy.
mejiac
100%
0%
mejiac,
User Rank: Ninja
2/19/2016 | 1:23:19 PM
Re: Very intersting move by Google
@jastroff,

Interesting notion of Google buying Yahoo.

Althought I honestly don't think Google would be the most interested prospect. Perhaps the likes of Microsoft might be a potential buyer, only because it would allow microsoft to consolidate services and get in one the few products that yahoo has (like part of the software bundle that comes with Smart TVs and other lesser known services that can potential increase market share with Windows mobile)
jastroff
50%
50%
jastroff,
User Rank: Ninja
2/19/2016 | 12:53:57 PM
Re: Very intersting move by Google
Great Advice for getting away from Yahoo mail. A little effort goes a long way

the only other hope is that Gmail buys Yahoo mail, and makes it normal. I don't think they want that headache, but if its all for sale, then maybe. 
manassehkatz
50%
50%
manassehkatz,
User Rank: Strategist
2/19/2016 | 11:38:43 AM
Transitioning to other email systems via Gmail
The auto-reply/auto-forward method works for MOST providers - Yahoo, Comcast, Verizon, etc. Where it doesn't work is AOL. I have actually used Gmail for a few of my customers to transition from AOL. AOL does not (as far as I know) provide any method for Forwarding. What I typically do is:

1 - Set up the new domain & email account - typically with a 3rd-party full-domain spam/virus filter (SpamStopsHere).

2 - Use Thunderbird to transfer all existing email from AOL to the new account via IMAP and remove the email from AOL. If done correctly, the folders and message timestamps will be preserved.

3 - Add a Gmail account and set it to automatically read AOL messages.

4 - Set the Gmail account to  automatically forward all messages to the new account and then delete the messages.

5 - Set an auto-reply on AOL to let people know about the new email address.

6 - Set up the new email account access - depending on the user this might be webmail, Thunderbird, Outlook or something else. Of course, since the user has been using AOL for 20 years, some training may be required :-)

The beauty of this solution is that the user transitions from a large public system (AOL) to a private company or personal domain without losing any existing email messages and continuing to receive all messages in one location (except for the spam). Using Gmail directly would help some - e.g., much better spam filtering & searching - but would still not provide the, IMHO, major advantage of a proper domain with full control.

Gmail itself is a major improvement. With one of these customers he actually received notification from the intermediary Gmail account at one point because it detected viruses in new AOL messages and halted the automatic transfer. His domain filtering would have blocked the messages as well - but AOL didn't.

 
mejiac
50%
50%
mejiac,
User Rank: Ninja
2/19/2016 | 11:04:33 AM
Re: Very intersting move by Google
@Gary_EL,

I actually stopped using my Yahoo account because of the exact same reason.

Here's a tip to possibility to a transition if in case you need to.

- Do an auto forward to whichever email services you switch to

- Do an auto reply to let folks know that you're in the process of migrating so that they can start sending you emails to your new account.

It'll take a while for you to be fully transitioned, but I think the end result will be worth it.

Hope this helps
Gary_EL
50%
50%
Gary_EL,
User Rank: Ninja
2/18/2016 | 11:40:22 PM
Re: Very intersting move by Google
What great news! I have a yahoo account that is becoming more and more trouble all the time due to a humongous amount of spam. The trouble is that I've had it since the 20th century, and I could never notify everyone who reaches me through it of a new email address. Now, I won't have to.
mejiac
50%
50%
mejiac,
User Rank: Ninja
2/18/2016 | 12:12:25 PM
Very intersting move by Google
Great article,

Gmail has always provided features that no other provider has come even close. I absolutly love Gmail's search features, it's always spot on (and even more when you utilize the logical search operators).... this isn't the case for Outlook, that even when running on a desktop, the search feature is a hit and miss.

It'll be interesting to see what's Google strategy on this, aside from giving non-gmail users exposure to how gmail works and manages communications.
Register for InformationWeek Newsletters
White Papers
Current Issue
Top IT Trends to Watch in Financial Services
IT pros at banks, investment houses, insurance companies, and other financial services organizations are focused on a range of issues, from peer-to-peer lending to cybersecurity to performance, agility, and compliance. It all matters.
Video
Slideshows
Twitter Feed
InformationWeek Radio
Sponsored Live Streaming Video
Everything You've Been Told About Mobility Is Wrong
Attend this video symposium with Sean Wisdom, Global Director of Mobility Solutions, and learn about how you can harness powerful new products to mobilize your business potential.