According to the latest schedule, as of October 16th, 2018, any users who’ve opted out of the new Gmail will be automatically migrated to the new experience.
They won’t be able to opt out after that date. Users who’ve already transitioned to the new Gmail will lose the ability to opt out as well.
I’m reminded of the adage that the only one who likes change is a wet baby.
So, why is Gmail changing?
Better integration with other tools
Personally, I like the new interface. It provides some good tools to increase efficiency. However, I understand that not everyone feels the same way. Increasing security is an extremely important consideration at this point of the Internet development. You can choose to switch back and forth between the versions until October 16th. Then, the decision on which to use will be easy .
Google has “helpfully” switched everyone over to the new Gmail interface. While we really, really like the new interface, we understand that some may prefer the older interface. At this point, you can still switch back by using the setting menu. According to the release calendar, as of October 16th, everyone will be switched to the new interface permanently.
Some of the features that we really like about the new interface:
access to Calendar on a side panel
access to Tasks on a side panel
Display density (more control over how much space email takes up)
There are some nice features in the new interface.
Tasks are now integrated. (Combined with the new Google Tasks App (Chrome Extension, iOS App, Android App), this means that Tasks are now really usable).
Calendar is now integrated.
Snooze email (Schedule it to return to your Inbox)
You will have the option to transition to the new Gmail. You have to enable it manually by
clicking the cog in the top-right corner,
then choosing Try the new Dearborn Public Schools Mail.
You can go back to the Classic view by following the same steps
**Please be aware the voicemails will not play within the browser (no .wav files will play). Thus, you would have to add to Drive or Download a voicemail to listen to that voicemail. Google is currently working on the issue.
Integration with Calendar, Tasks, Keep
Along with the new Gmail, Google is launching a revamped Google Tasks and making it, as well as Calendar and Keep, easily accessible in Gmail from a right-side panel.
This may be my favorite feature. The right hand side now has buttons which reveal Calendar, Keep and Tasks. Tasks become a supported useful feature. Drag an email to the Task list and then archive the email. You can also create (and easily switch amongst) multiple Task lists.
Spam and phishing emails are a part of our everyday lives and from now on, you’ll see bolder, bigger, redder warnings when an email looks suspicious.
After launching on the mobile apps, Smart replies are coming to the web Gmail interface too. For short messages and answers, this is a quick way to get things done without crafting an elaborate reply.
We’ve all been there: you get an email and hope to reply to it today, maybe tomorrow at the latest. Fast forward two weeks and that email is still hanging in your inbox and you are actively trying to avoid looking at it again. Gmail will start nudging you to follow up with emails you’ve received a few days ago and neglected.
Quick actions, snooze, view attachments
If you hover over any email in your inbox, you’ll see a few quick action icons that let you archive, delete, mark as read, RSVP to invites, and snooze the email so it shows up later. Attachments will also display as small and easily accessible chips below the email.
Logo With Account Name
The Dearborn School Logo will be moved from the left hand side to the right hand side with your name. This really helps with identifying which account that you are currently in.
Since we rolled out email for students, we are aware that there has been some confusion over the names. We have several instances of students and staff with the same name. In order to help clear up some of the confusion, we are implementing pre-appending Student: to all students.
Currently, this doesn’t seem to show up in the Gmail Compose window, but does show up in Contacts.
It looks like this:
Naturally, you should note the difference in gmail addresses (staff has a very different pattern than students).
Once everything is processed and in sync, users can start email with Student: Student Name (where Student Name is an actual name). This doesn’t help with just typing the name of an adult staff member and seeing a student though (again, please look for the appropriate email address pattern).
Hopefully, this will be one more clue to assist all of our users.
We are working on implementing some other features to assist in identifying staff and students.
*Please note that this is still rolling out and not all students will have the pre-appended Student: yet. We are not sure how long that the sync will take.
Please remember to check your Spam folder in your email occasionally. Sometimes, legitimate email gets “caught” in the Spam filter. This is especially true when a large amount of email is sent out (especially if it includes links). One example would be email that was recently sent from ACT.
Spam is automatically deleted every 30 days. Thus, it is a good idea to check the Spam folder every couple of weeks (hint: a recurring event every 2 weeks on your calendar can be a good reminder).
To check your Spam folder, just click on the Spam tag (probably about 6 tags below the Inbox on the left hand pane of Gmail. I generally scroll through looking at the Sender name.
If you identify anything that is NOT Spam, select the message, then click the Not Spam button along the top.
I generally click the “Check all” box, and click “Delete Forever” as I finish a screen of Spam.
Google Apps provides for a lot of power for users.
With great power comes great responsibility.
Recently it has become apparent that some users may have changed some settings.
This can be very powerful if you are aware of what you are doing. However, if you aren’t, this can cause confusion.
One example of this is the Priority Inbox. This can be extremely powerful. Many people receive a huge amount of email every day (several hundreds to thousands). Unfortunately, not everyone agrees on proper email etiquette and SPAM does exist. Thus, for power users, Priority Inbox can be very powerful by presenting important email in a separate inbox. This does take some training, but can make individuals much more efficient.
Problems can occur though if the Priority Inbox is turned on (each user has to take specific actions to turn it on) and then don’t do anything with it. Email will be delivered to that inbox and the user may never check it. Thus, something that can be powerfully useful and make people more efficient can lead to frustration.
Please take advantage of some of the powerful features that are available for you when you are ready. In the meantime, grow as many dendrites as possible with the current settings.
We have begun our exciting transition to Google Apps for Education. This will bring powerful opportunities to us. Along with those opportunities are necessary changes.
Many people now use their phones to check for email. In order to continue doing so, you’ll need to make some changes in your settings. We recommend creating a new email account on your phone. All old email will sync.