Monthly Archives: March 2016

Introducing Gmail Mic Drop

UPDATE April 1st 2pm: We heard feedback that some of you were negatively impacted by this feature, so we quickly turned it off late last night. In addition, we are working to bring back Mic-Dropped messages that had subsequent replies to your inbox, so you can read those.

We realize many of you use Gmail for very important messages, and we are sorry if Mic Drop was in any way harmful to you. Note that if you’re a Google Apps business, education or government user this feature was never turned on.

At Google we have a culture of sharing what we learned when things go wrong, and we want to share these learnings with you:

  1. We should have asked you before turning on the feature, and it should have included a confirmation before sending.
  2. We didn't anticipate accidental clicks: "Send + Mic Drop" was too close to other send buttons ("Send" as well as "Send & Archive"), which caused confusion. 
  3. And yes there was a bug. It was rare, but possible to press the regular "Send" button and still Mic Drop if you did the following: 
    • Opened a new compose window
    • Pressed the “Send & Mic Drop” button with no recipients and saw error message
    • Edited the message by adding message recipient(s)
    • Pressed the regular send button.

Again, sorry. We love April Fools jokes at Google, and we regret that this joke missed the mark and disappointed you. 

UPDATE April 1st 1am: Well, it looks like we pranked ourselves this year. 😟 Due to a bug, the Mic Drop feature inadvertently caused more headaches than laughs. We’re truly sorry. The feature has been turned off. If you are still seeing it, please reload your Gmail page.


Email's great, but sometimes you just wanna hit the eject button. Like those heated threads at work, when everyone's wrong except you (obviously). Or those times when someone's seeking group approval, but your opinion is the only one that matters (amirite?). Or maybe you just nailed it, and there's nothing more to say (bam).

Today, Gmail is making it easier to have the last word on any email with Mic Drop. Simply reply to any email using the new 'Send + Mic Drop' button. Everyone will get your message, but that's the last you'll ever hear about it. Yes, even if folks try to respond, you won't see it.

When you drop the mic, your email will also include an explanatory image–just to help set expectations.

Friends and family have been testing Gmail Mic Drop for months, and the response so far has been awesome:

  • "Sending email is so much easier when you don't have to worry about people responding!"
  • "Mic Drop is a huge improvement over Mute! I can finally let everyone know I'm just not interested."
  • "My team solves problems so much faster with Mic Drop. In fact, we stopped talking to each other entirely!"

Gmail Mic Drop is launching first on the web, but mobile updates are on the way. So stay tuned, and stay saucy.

Source: Gmail Blog


Introducing Gmail Mic Drop

UPDATE April 1st 2pm: We heard feedback that some of you were negatively impacted by this feature, so we quickly turned it off late last night. In addition, we are working to bring back Mic-Dropped messages that had subsequent replies to your inbox, so you can read those.

We realize many of you use Gmail for very important messages, and we are sorry if Mic Drop was in any way harmful to you. Note that if you’re a Google Apps business, education or government user this feature was never turned on.

At Google we have a culture of sharing what we learned when things go wrong, and we want to share these learnings with you:

  1. We should have asked you before turning on the feature, and it should have included a confirmation before sending.
  2. We didn't anticipate accidental clicks: "Send + Mic Drop" was too close to other send buttons ("Send" as well as "Send & Archive"), which caused confusion. 
  3. And yes there was a bug. It was rare, but possible to press the regular "Send" button and still Mic Drop if you did the following: 
    • Opened a new compose window
    • Pressed the “Send & Mic Drop” button with no recipients and saw error message
    • Edited the message by adding message recipient(s)
    • Pressed the regular send button.

Again, sorry. We love April Fools jokes at Google, and we regret that this joke missed the mark and disappointed you. 

UPDATE April 1st 1am: Well, it looks like we pranked ourselves this year. 😟 Due to a bug, the Mic Drop feature inadvertently caused more headaches than laughs. We’re truly sorry. The feature has been turned off. If you are still seeing it, please reload your Gmail page.


Email's great, but sometimes you just wanna hit the eject button. Like those heated threads at work, when everyone's wrong except you (obviously). Or those times when someone's seeking group approval, but your opinion is the only one that matters (amirite?). Or maybe you just nailed it, and there's nothing more to say (bam).

Today, Gmail is making it easier to have the last word on any email with Mic Drop. Simply reply to any email using the new 'Send + Mic Drop' button. Everyone will get your message, but that's the last you'll ever hear about it. Yes, even if folks try to respond, you won't see it.

When you drop the mic, your email will also include an explanatory image–just to help set expectations.

Friends and family have been testing Gmail Mic Drop for months, and the response so far has been awesome:

  • "Sending email is so much easier when you don't have to worry about people responding!"
  • "Mic Drop is a huge improvement over Mute! I can finally let everyone know I'm just not interested."
  • "My team solves problems so much faster with Mic Drop. In fact, we stopped talking to each other entirely!"

Gmail Mic Drop is launching first on the web, but mobile updates are on the way. So stay tuned, and stay saucy.

Source: Gmail Blog


Introducing Gmail Mic Drop



Email's great, but sometimes you just wanna hit the eject button. Like those heated threads at work, when everyone's wrong except you (obviously). Or those times when someone's seeking group approval, but your opinion is the only one that matters (amirite?). Or maybe you just nailed it, and there's nothing more to say (bam).

Today, Gmail is making it easier to have the last word on any email with Mic Drop. Simply reply to any email using the new 'Send + Mic Drop' button. Everyone will get your message, but that's the last you'll ever hear about it. Yes, even if folks try to respond, you won't see it.

When you drop the mic, your email will also include an explanatory image--just to help set expectations.

Friends and family have been testing Gmail Mic Drop for months, and the response so far has been awesome:

  • "Sending email is so much easier when you don't have to worry about people responding!"
  • "Mic Drop is a huge improvement over Mute! I can finally let everyone know I'm just not interested."
  • "My team solves problems so much faster with Mic Drop. In fact, we stopped talking to each other entirely!"

Gmail Mic Drop is launching first on the web, but mobile updates are on the way. So stay tuned, and stay saucy.

Source: Gmail Blog


App Monetization Insights: How MobiSystems adapted their way to success

Originally posted on the AdMob blog

Posted by Joe Salisbury, Product Specialist, AdMob
This is post 4 of our 5-part blog series featuring monetization tips straight from successful app developers. If you’re interested in further exploring the question, “what’s the best way to monetize my app?”, check out our free No-nonsense Guide to App Monetization.

Our guest this week is Elitza Bratkova, Director Business Development at MobiSystems, the company behind a few of the most popular business and productivity apps on Google Play.  Their flagship product, OfficeSuite, is a successful mobile office solution for Android with a user base of over 200M download and preloaded users.

A clear company value surfaced as a big part of MobiSystem’s success – flexibility. Check out ways you can also use flexibility to your advantage with these tips:


1. Adapt quickly to promising platforms and opportunities.

MobiSytems started over 10 years ago. In its early days, they created dictionaries for the most popular platforms – PalmOS and Pocket PC. When a new platform popped up called Symbian, they were quick to build for it, with some success.

Then Android came along in 2007, and Elitza saw the opportunity, despite the business being resource constrained.

“It was clear that mobile devices were becoming more popular for working professionals. The trend was clear. While we did opt-out of building for smaller platforms, this opportunity was in line with our vision and it seemed promising. It seemed like a platform where our target users would be. It was a risk, but we took it.”

The risk paid off. Being one of the earliests apps on the Google Play Store, and being pre-loaded on thousands of devices helped boost MobiSystems presence. Android as a platform significantly grew, expanding the user base that MobiSystems had access to.

MobiSystem’s most recent analysis of their target audience revealed that 15-20% of their users have devices on more than one platform. They’re now working on a new iteration of their products that allows users to use one license to access the app on multiple platforms.

2. Be flexible with your monetization strategy.

MobiSystem’s early users were accustomed to only one type of app monetization model from business apps – paying for access to premium versions. As consumer apps became successful with new models, the MobiSystems team was eager to adopt new monetization features in Android.

Since profiting from in-app purchases was a business model they could easily adopt, they decided to offer a version of their app for free with an in-app subscription to gain access to premium features. They saw a huge spike in downloads but some initial decline in revenues.To solve this, they turned to a monetization model that business apps never tried before—in-app advertising.

Transitioning to ads did take some time, but worked out positively. By starting slowly, experimenting with placement, being committed to showing high quality ads, and being clear that ads were critical in supporting their free version, MobiSystem bridged their revenue gap and built a successful business. Best of all, they’re able to sustainably offer a useful app for free. One of their products, OfficeSuite, has over 100,000 daily installs and has been consistently on the top free apps list in the the Play Store’s business categories.

When considering your app’s monetization strategy, consider all of your options thoroughly. There may be potential to use business models that are unusual in your space.

We hope you enjoyed the tips from MobiSystems. If you found this information helpful, don’t forget to check out The No-nonsense Guide to App Monetization. Also, stay connected on all things AdMob by following their Twitter and Google+ pages and be sure to connect with MobiSystems on Twitter here.

Express yo’self with emoji in Smart Reply

When someone emails you asking to schedule a meeting, there's a good chance you're thinking, "Aw 💩 ." Or, when you get that 17th update on that topic you stopped caring about 10 emails ago, you just wanna say 💤 . Or maybe your friend just emailed you photos from Vegas, and you get inspired to stand up and 👏 . Whatever you want to say, emoji can say it better (obvs). So we figured we'd take the deep neural network behind Smart Reply, and make it more sassy.

The result is emoji suggestions in addition to (or instead of) really boring text replies. In our testing, we've also found that emoji do a better job of plumbing the emotional depths of one's soul, so we're optimistic that today's update will encourage more open and honest email conversations.

Looking ahead, Smart Reply will actually get better the more you use it, so you'll be able to strike just the right balance between written responses, and 😍 😱 🛀 🎉.

PS: Smart Reply is only suggesting emoji. We are investigating. Pardon our dust.

PPS: We are happy to report that our deep neural network had quickly learned that when given a choice, you, our users, always pick emoji. Smart Reply adapted so quickly that we thought it was a bug. Thankfully, Smart Reply will continue to show the three most perfect replies, which happen to always be emoji.

PPPS: 🚀🐍🎉🐱🍕💯

Source: Gmail Blog


Express yo’self with emoji in Smart Reply

When someone emails you asking to schedule a meeting, there's a good chance you're thinking, "Aw 💩 ." Or, when you get that 17th update on that topic you stopped caring about 10 emails ago, you just wanna say 💤 . Or maybe your friend just emailed you photos from Vegas, and you get inspired to stand up and 👏 . Whatever you want to say, emoji can say it better (obvs). So we figured we'd take the deep neural network behind Smart Reply, and make it more sassy.

The result is emoji suggestions in addition to (or instead of) really boring text replies. In our testing, we've also found that emoji do a better job of plumbing the emotional depths of one's soul, so we're optimistic that today's update will encourage more open and honest email conversations.

Looking ahead, Smart Reply will actually get better the more you use it, so you'll be able to strike just the right balance between written responses, and 😍 😱 🛀 🎉.

PS: Smart Reply is only suggesting emoji. We are investigating. Pardon our dust.

PPS: We are happy to report that our deep neural network had quickly learned that when given a choice, you, our users, always pick emoji. Smart Reply adapted so quickly that we thought it was a bug. Thankfully, Smart Reply will continue to show the three most perfect replies, which happen to always be emoji.

PPPS: 🚀🐍🎉🐱🍕💯

Source: Gmail Blog


Express yo’self with emoji in Smart Reply



When someone emails you asking to schedule a meeting, there's a good chance you're thinking, "Aw 💩 ." Or, when you get that 17th update on that topic you stopped caring about 10 emails ago, you just wanna say 💤 . Or maybe your friend just emailed you photos from Vegas, and you get inspired to stand up and 👏 . Whatever you want to say, emoji can say it better (obvs). So we figured we'd take the deep neural network behind Smart Reply, and make it more sassy.

The result is emoji suggestions in addition to (or instead of) really boring text replies. In our testing, we've also found that emoji do a better job of plumbing the emotional depths of one's soul, so we're optimistic that today's update will encourage more open and honest email conversations.

Looking ahead, Smart Reply will actually get better the more you use it, so you'll be able to strike just the right balance between written responses, and 😍 😱 🛀 🎉.

PS: Smart Reply is only suggesting emoji. We are investigating. Pardon our dust.

PPS: We are happy to report that our deep neural network had quickly learned that when given a choice, you, our users, always pick emoji. Smart Reply adapted so quickly that we thought it was a bug. Thankfully, Smart Reply will continue to show the three most perfect replies, which happen to always be emoji.

PPPS: 🚀🐍🎉🐱🍕💯

Source: Gmail Blog


Google Search for your socks

Do your socks mysteriously disappear after you've done a load of washing?

This is a serious problem for many Australians, who end up with boxes and boxes of mismatched socks. Every year we have been resigned to add new orphans to the box… until today.

We’re teaming up with retailers across Australia to launch a new range of Searchable Socks — to organise the world’s undergarments and make them universally findable.



These new bluetooth-enabled socks are fitted with thin LTE beacons that wrap around the top of your lower calf, just like the coloured stripes you’d see on traditional socks. If you can’t find one sock, you can press the beacon on its pair and let the Google Search app on your phone pinpoint its whereabouts. The missing sock will then sing this song to help you find it.

We’ve been working hard to make this technology small and seamless (literally). You won’t even notice the technology is there.

For the fashion-conscious, the socks are available in blue, red, yellow, and green. You can also purchase a pure white version from the Google Store that allows the beacon strip to camouflage with the rest of the sock.

We’ll be open-sourcing the technology later this year, with the idea of creating an entire ecosystem of developers and sock makers. Old socks can also be retrofitted with this same technology, so that they never go missing again either. Simply attach a Searchable beacon strip to each sock and you’re ready to walk.

Posted by Paula Legg, Searchable Socks Product Manager, Google Australia and New Zealand