September 22, 2014

GMail Labs Experiment Signals Another Sign of Android Invasion

green_robotIf you’re like us, chances are pretty good a lot of your contacts Gmail are Android users.  Wouldn’t it be great if you could open Gmail up and know whether or not your friends were using their Android devices for chat instead of sitting at a PC?  You’d be able to adjust your conversation and have proper expectations before you get mad at your friend for typing too slow.  If only there was a way…

Gmail has introduced a new Labs feature today which does exactly that.  The experiment is called Green Robot and it shows Android icons next to your contacts who are using an Android device. It’s simple, but cool nonetheless.  You’ll see from the picture below how it works!

When your chat buddies log into Gmail, their presence icons will revert to the traditional red, green, and orange status bubbles. In addition, if your chat buddy happens to be logged into both Gmail and Android chat then the traditional Gmail status icons will be shown.

gmail_chat

Oh – before you run off, getting all Big Brother on us… This is just an experiment.  It’s likely that were this to ever roll out as a standard feature, you will be able to opt-out from your end.

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