Today on the official Gmail Blog a new feature was announced, Google+ notifications in Gmail. Basically this change brings Google+ interactions directly into a user’s inbox. If a user opts in to have Google+ notifications delivered to their inbox, they can respond, +1 and more.
Here’s an example from Google’s post which illustrates the change, which begins rolling out today:
Users can now see all notifications including comments from others in real time, right in their Gmail inbox. Additional functionality allows comments and +1′s to be posted to Google+ instantly direct from one’s inbox.
This will also work for mobile email users or POP IMAP users. Anyone that doesn’t want to use a Google+ app can just hit “reply to this email” and the emailed response will add directly to the Google+ conversation. This has been a popular feature for threaded web apps like Basecamp or forums.
Supported services include:
- Android 2.5+
- iOS 5.0+
- Standard POP and IMAP clients
While some users may want to interact socially from their inbox, I can’t help but ask, “Is this a needed feature?”
An official Google+ app already exists for the major mobile platforms of iPhone and Android. Google+ notifications are already present within Gmail through the red notification counter:
The blog posts states:
“We’re always working to create a simpler, more intuitive experience for our users”
However, this change appears seems to make Gmail overly busy as Google+ is simply invading the screen, and they don’t need to.
So, if the big red interactive button in Gmail, the mobile app or Google+ web interface aren’t enough for you, keep an eye out for Google+ interactivity coming to an inbox near you.