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Gmail redesigns its message window for Android, iPhone, iPad

An update to Gmail.com for Android and iPhone lets you quickly add, remove, and manage contacts in the compose screen.

Jessica Dolcourt Editorial Director, Content Operations
Jessica Dolcourt's career with CNET began in 2006, and spans reviews, reporting, analysis and commentary for desktop software; mobile software, including the very first Android and iPhone apps and operating systems; and mobile hardware, with an emphasis on iPhone and Samsung. Jessica was one of the first people in the world to test, review and report on foldable phones and 5G wireless speeds. Jessica began leading CNET's How-To section for tips and FAQs in 2019, guiding coverage of practical advice on expansive topics ranging from personal finance to phones and home. She holds an MA with Distinction from the University of Warwick (UK).
Expertise Team leadership, audience engagement, iPhone, Android, iOS, tips and FAQs.
Jessica Dolcourt

Google is continuing the slow and steady march of improvements to its Android-, iPhone-, and now iPad-optimized site. On Tuesday, the company pushed out a handful of small changes to the way Gmail.com handles new messages.

Gmail.com compose window on iPhone, iPad, Android
An update to Gmail.com for Android and iPhone lets you quickly add, remove, and manage contacts in the compose screen. Screenshot by Jessica Dolcourt/CNET

The height of the address field now expands to accommodate the full list of added contacts, so you can view your recipient spread in a glance. Tap a contact name, and Gmail also gives you an escape hatch, a quick button for removing a a recipient you've suddenly thought better of including. Tapping the backspace also achieves the same end.

Then there are the buddy names themselves. If a contact's address pops up in the automated suggestions when you begin to type, selecting your pal shows only their name, not their entire address. As for other enhancements, a "plus" button surfaces your most-e-mailed contacts.

We've certified the new features as useful shortcuts, but here's our favorite trick: typing just your friend's Gmail name, followed by a comma. Google will fill in the rest on the backend.

We can't see ourselves using Gmail.com over a native e-mail app on mobile phones (the iPad may be a different story,) but the enhancements are certainly an improvement, and worth a try.