• Tuesday, April 23, 2024
businessday logo

BusinessDay

Fact Check: Google is not shutting down Gmail

Gmail

Your emails are safe because Google is not shutting down its popular email service, Gmail.

The firm has said information about the ‘sunsetting’ of Gmail is incorrect. On Thursday night, screenshots of a message announcing an impending Gmail shutdown started circulating on X.

The message purported to have been sent to subscribers read, “Dear Gmail User, We are reaching out to share an important update about Gmail….”

“As of August 1, 2024, Gmail will officially be sunsetted, marking the end of its service…,” it continued. This message is false. The service, with over 1.8 billion active users, is going nowhere. Referring to the screenshot, a Google source told BusinessDay, “This is incorrect.”

As Morning Brew, a tech publication, puts it on X, “If you thought it was being sunset, we have a bridge to sell you.”

Gmail is not shutting down, and Google has been busy infusing AI-powered features. Just last month, the firm launched a Duet AI feature to help users write emails and last week, it allowed Gemini to integrate with Google accounts.

One Gmail feature is shutting down in 2024, though. In 2023, Google notified users that Gmail’s basic HTML view, designed for users with slower Internet connections or those using older browsers, will no longer be available starting January 2024.

Part of an email sent to some users on Hacker News read, “We’re writing to let you know that the Gmail Basic HTML view for desktop web and mobile web will be disabled starting early January 2024. The Gmail Basic HTML views are previous versions of Gmail that were replaced by their modern successors 10+ years ago and do not include full Gmail feature functionality.”

On Gmail’s support doc, a note reads, “Gmail is transitioning users from Basic HTML view to the latest version of Gmail, also known as Standard view. If you use a screen reader for Gmail in Basic HTML view, read our transition guide.”

Gmail’s HTML version did not have features like chat, spell checker, search filters, keyboard shortcuts, and rich formatting, but it helped people with poor Internet connectivity access their email accounts.