Google is letting third-party developers integrate add-ons directly into Gmail. Later this year, developers will be able to write one integration and have it run on the iOS, web, and Android. The tech giant has already worked with a handful of different businesses to test the third-party add-on support within Mountain View’s email client.
While there are plenty of services that add functionality to Big G’s email client already, they do that through a browser extension. Android Headlines notes that third-party add-ons will definitely be a useful functionality for everyday Gmail users. For the developer side of things the tech giant has made it ridiculously seamless for the add-on development process. The Internet giant said at the Cloud Next conference in San Francisco that users will be able to install the add-ons from the G Suite Marketplace, which already hosts add-ons for the company’s other productivity tools like Sheets and Docs.
Engadget notes that the email add-ons are handy for adding quick access to tools people would normally have to leave Gmail to employ. Mountain View said that it is changing how users access those features. Users can expect to install add-ons from later this year. Google has however, already been working with some firms to build a few business-focused integrations including SalesForce contacts and QuickBooks invoicing.
The Alphabet subsidiary has launched a developer preview of the new Gmail functionality that will offer access to whatever the add-on does across Android, desktop, and iOS apps. G suite users will however, not immediately be able to take advantage of the new email client support as standard.
The search behemoth is rolling out the capability mainly as an enterprise feature for now. For instance, customers will be able to build an invoice directly in the email service and send it in a reply. The Internet giant explained that its email add-on will be contextual, which means they will only show up based on the content of the email service they are replying to.
Developers who want to build these Gmail add-ons can write them once and they will run on all of the supported platforms. Tech Crunch notes that while Big G is presently targeting add-ons at its business users, people who are not paid subscribers of the G Suite will also be able to employ them. Developers will however, be able to choose if they want only paying G Suite users or they want to make their extensions available to consumers.
Google is rolling out support for third-party add-ons for its Gmail apps. The tools are different because they do not require browser extensions, which may be more appealing to security-conscious administrators. The Alphabet subsidiary plans to open up early developer access soon.
By Anila Maring
Photo Courtesy Google