Gmail adds contact info in search, improved Google+ integration


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6 May 2012
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Email is more than just messages going back and forth -- it's also about the people sending them. That's why today Google introduced changes that continue to bring people front and center in Gmail, just as they did with profile photos in conversation view, the people widget and last year's integrations with Google+. Today’s changes include quick access to contact details when viewing past conversations as well as improved integration with Google+ circles.

Quick access to contact details
When you search for an email address, the search results will now show you contact details in addition to that person's profile photo and the emails sent from and to them. From here, you can start a chat, call their phone and more. Plus, if your contacts have a Google+ profile, this information will stay up to date automatically.

You can get to these same results in a variety of ways including from the people widget, contacts and the chat list search menu.

Improved circle integration and circle search
In addition to adding contact details to search results, google have made some improvements to the circles integration announced in December. When you select a circle, you'll now see profile photos of people in that circle at the top right of the page. Plus, when you click on these images you'll be taken directly to search results with contact details.

Circles are also now supported in search and filters. Find messages from a specific circle by typing circle:[circle name] in the search box. You can also find mail from any of your circled contacts by searching with has:circle. You can refine your search even further with other criteria and create filters based on circles. This means you can now view all the unread emails from your ‘Friends’ circle or automatically star every message that comes from your ‘VIP’ circle.


Via Official Gmail Blog
By any means, this is certainly far from being one of the biggest changes Gmail's ever seen -- still, it's one that's likely to make a few tasks a wee bit easier for you. Inside the recent tweaks, Google added a new quick access trait that makes contact details -- such as phone numbers -- show up automatically in search results within your cherished G inbox. Additionally, the Android-maker has improved the Google+ integration (again), now allowing folks to narrow down conversations from specific Circles in the search box (you know, something like Circle: Awesome Engadget editors). Google says the changes will be rolling out over the course of the day, but in the meantime, you could always check out what exactly happens behind Gmail's closed doors.

Google's latest Gmail tweaks bring contact info to search results, enhanced Circle integration
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