It’s been almost a year since Gmail rolled out the Smart Reply feature for its app, and we can all vouch that it has made our lives simpler. Those AI-powered response buttons are a handy tool when you need to send out a quick confirmation or acknowledge a mail but don’t have time to type a full-blown reply. Taking the integration of AI capabilities with the Gmail interface a notch higher, Google announced the introduction of a Smart Compose feature via a blog post on May 8.
An extension of Smart Reply, Smart Compose is meant to speed up the process of drafting emails from scratch. The feature throws up suggestions for greetings, sign offs and common phrases in the email body, helping you draft them a lot more seamlessly. The Smart Compose feature operates in the background, which means you can continue to write an email without it interfering with the process, and if you like a sentence suggestion, you can include it in the email text by simply pressing the ‘tab’ key.
Smart Compose looks like a promising tool for cutting back on repetitive writing, finding the right words when your own brain is struck by analysis paralysis, and reducing grammatical and spelling errors. It also has the ability to offer contextually relevant suggestions. For example, if you are writing an email on Friday, the Smart Compose feature may suggest closing it with ‘Have a great weekend!’
The new AI-powered feature will be made available to the recently upgraded Gmail version over the next few weeks and rolled out for G Suite customers in a few months. To access the Smart Compose, along with a host of other new functionalities added to Gmail recently, you need to enable the new Gmail by going to Settings and selecting the ‘Try the new Gmail’ option. Enable the ‘experimental access’ option in the general tab of your Gmail setting for instant access to these new, improved features. Of course, you always have the option to switch back to the old version by simply unchecking the boxes.