At I/O this year, we announced ways we’re making AI more helpful for everyone. That includes rolling out our new “Help me write” feature in Gmail to users in Workspace Labs to make composing emails easier than ever. But that’s just the latest AI update on the Gmail front. All Gmail users already have access to a host of other AI-powered features — and have, in some cases, for years. “Gmail has a long history of using the power of AI to help users in all aspects of their email journey,” says Chao Wang, a software engineer on the Gmail intelligence team.
Here are six AI-powered features that make Gmail more helpful across a wide range of tasks, from managing incoming mail to helping craft replies.
1. “Help me write”
“Help me write” can create entire email drafts for you based on simple prompts. It’s currently available as part of the Workspace Labs program, and you can sign up online and express your interest in joining the program here. Once you have access to the tool, you’ll see the “Help me write” icon when you go to Compose a new email in Gmail. Look for the star with a pencil, and add a prompt explaining what you’d like your email to be about — maybe you’d like to ask a friend for book recommendations, especially thrillers set in picturesque locales. Whatever the case, once you hit “Create,” you’ll see a full draft based on your prompt. Choose “Insert” or check out the “Refine” button to make some tweaks — you can select options to make your email more formal, more elaborate or shorter, depending on your needs. You can even try “I’m feeling lucky” to see what tone “Help me write” comes up with. Gmail has also recently added the ability to pull details from your previous thread to help fill in contextual gaps.
“Help me write” uses generative AI large language models to interpret your prompt and decide what combination of words best represents your request. And this new technology builds on past generative models we’ve used for Gmail’s Smart Compose and Smart Reply features — keep reading for details on those, too.