Dynamic email, a new feature that Google is currently rolling out to Gmail, aims to make emails more useful through interactive elements. Several companies, including Google itself, is already taking advantage of this feature, and the search giant is currently deploying this functionality to the desktop version of Gmail. However, it may take some time before support for dynamic emails rolls out to Gmail's mobile applications, and people who use third-party email applications will see a static message when they receive a dynamic email.
In contrast to static messages, dynamic emails automatically update to provide users with the latest information and updates about a comment thread or job listings. For example, when people receive an email notification about comments made on Google Docs, users will no longer receive a separate message every time someone mentions them in the document, but instead, a thread embedded in a single email will receive regular updates. From this thread, people can reply or resolve comments without opening the document on Google Docs itself.
Dynamic email also allows users to view more information about recommendations and deals directly in the email itself. For example, when users receive emails about hotel recommendations, consumers may also see more images of the hotel and details about the hotel's ratings by clicking elements embedded on the email itself. It will also enable people to respond to meetings and other invitations without opening a separate website, and users may also fill out questionnaires within the email.
To ensure the privacy of users who will receive dynamic emails, Google will review the companies, businesses, or individuals who would like to use this feature. This measure adds an additional layer of security over Google's privacy and security protections that the search giant is currently offering to its users.
Background: A separate blog post notes that the dynamic emails feature utilizes the AMP technology, and aside from Gmail, other major email providers like Yahoo, Outlook, and Mail.ru will likely roll out support for this feature soon. Dynamic emails use AMP to update the content received by the user, as well as secure people's personal information through security features embedded into the technology.
Within the last few years, Google has been incorporating features to Gmail that make emails more interactive. Among the recent features added by the search giant is the smart replies feature, which uses machine learning to generate short responses to emails that people receive. Meanwhile, the Smart Compose feature also predicts what the person will likely write next with the help of artificial intelligence algorithms. Moreover, the mobile application of Gmail will also receive features found in the Inbox application, which include nudges, a feature that moves older emails to the top of the inbox, as well as reminders and bundles.
Impact: Moving forward, the inclusion of more interactive features to Gmail may signal the search giant's intention to shape how emails work in the future. For users, getting updated information within a single email should prevent miscommunication between people, and allowing users to perform actions within the message may help people become more productive.