A…simpler Google? Yes, from the company that brought you chat app after chat app, Google said Wednesday that it planned to integrate Gmail, Chat, Rooms, and Meet into a unified interfaceâ€”that looks a lot like Outlook.
That should come as no surprise. Javier Soltero, who led the Acompli email app that was later acquired by Microsoft, integrated a calendar, a file picker, and even a focused inbox years before Microsoft Outlook did. Those features eventually became part of Outlook. Now Soltero, the vice president and general manager of Googleâ€™s G Suite, has tidied up Gmail as well.
Last month, Google brought Google Chat into Gmail for the web. According to a blog post Google published today, Chat will â€œsoonâ€� be joining Gmail on Android and iOS as well. The interface should be extremely familiar to mobile Outlook app users, though while Outlook includes a calendar, search, and email icons at the bottom of its mobile app. Google has all four of its key collaboration apps at the bottom of the new Gmail interface. (Weirdly, Google Calendar still hasnâ€™t made an appearance.)Â