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Happy 15th birthday to Gmail, which is about to get a great feature we’ve been waiting for

Updated Apr 1st, 2019 9:04AM EDT
Gmail update
Image: Valentin Wolf/imageBROKER/REX/Shutterstock

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It’s hard to believe that Gmail celebrates its 15th birthday today, debuting as it did on April 1 way back in 2004 — back when, given the date, many people thought Google was pulling our leg by announcing a free email service on this day of all days. “Google Gets the Message, Launches Gmail,” the press release from the time declared. “Search is Number Two Online Activity — Email is Number One; ‘Heck, Yeah,’ Say Google Founders”.

Certainly, the world looks a lot different now than it did then. Gmail’s launch, for example, came three years before the iPhone was a thing and a couple of years before the launch of Twitter. Today, Gmail is the premiere free email service, a centerpiece of the workday for countless professionals. To be sure, the search giant is still tweaking things, finding opportunities to make updates that the company hopes will keep improving the user experience such as this news we told you about just a few days ago. The short version: Google is going to start making emails look and feel more like webpage experiences with dynamic, interactive content.

Meanwhile, it seems that Google finally, at the ripe old age of 15, is releasing a feature that users have wanted for quite a while now. We first told you back in July that Google is apparently close to adding an official scheduler to Gmail, a revelation that came via a few lines of code found in a teardown of the then-latest Gmail app APK.

As we saw yesterday from a look at a few lines of code from the last Gmail app APK, the scheduler will work exactly as we had hoped. That insight came thanks to a 9to5Google report, which found that the official scheduler will allow users to send a scheduled email as soon as two minutes into the future or to delay it to anytime under “50 years from now.” The user interface will include an option to select your date and time, as well as a way to confirm your choice once the message is finished.

Additionally, the feature will also let you cancel the delayed message at any time, if you want, before it’s sent. At that point, the email will return to “draft” status. Google confirmed the news on Monday, and the new feature is already beginning to roll out.

Andy Meek Trending News Editor

Andy Meek is a reporter based in Memphis who has covered media, entertainment, and culture for over 20 years. His work has appeared in outlets including The Guardian, Forbes, and The Financial Times, and he’s written for BGR since 2015. Andy's coverage includes technology and entertainment, and he has a particular interest in all things streaming.

Over the years, he’s interviewed legendary figures in entertainment and tech that range from Stan Lee to John McAfee, Peter Thiel, and Reed Hastings.