Google Launches Gmail Priority Inbox To Better Filter Your Inbox

Aug 31, 2010

Yesterday Google launched a new feature that is sure to have hardcore Gmail users jumping for joy: Priority Inbox.

Priority inbox is your virtual mail clerk for managing your massive email overload. At the heart of the feature is a comprehensive algorithm that sifts through emails and replies to find important keywords, people you email the most and other important relays between you and others. All of this information is factored in to how Priority Inbox categorizes important email over non critical replies.

Besides the alogorithm, starred emails are grouped in to Priority Inbox. What Google hopes to accomplish with grouping starred emails with pre-sorted email is that users will be more diligent in grouping emails that need acting upon.

In your Gmail window, you should see a tab above inbox showing off the new menu item. If it doesn’t show up for you, don’t worry, the feature is being rolled out slowly to users throughout the week.

Priority Inbox Makes Users The Number One Priorirty

Priority Inbox is not new by any means, it was originally included in Gmail but was taken out before launch to undergo further refinement. While the feature was being tested internally, Google found users saved 16% of time checking emails.

The Official Google Blog further refines the purpose of Priority Inbox:. “Gmail has always been pretty good at filtering junk mail into the “spam” folder. But today, in addition to spam, people get a lot of mail that isn’t outright junk but isn’t very important–bologna, or “bacn.” So we’ve evolved Gmail’s filter to address this problem and extended it to not only classify outright spam, but also to help users separate this “bologna” from the important stuff. In a way, Priority Inbox is like your personal assistant, helping you focus on the messages that matter without requiring you to set up complex rules.”

Bringing efficiency to email checking is Google’s next major step with Gmail and is a drastic step towards refining spam filters. Users who receive hundreds if not thousands of emails a day are the ones that will benefit the most from this new implementation in Gmail. Google estimates users who spend 13 hours per week on email will save a week’s worth of time after a year of using Priority Inbox.

However, the feature is considered Beta so Google Apps users won’t be able to take advantage of Priority Inbox unless their IT department configures beta features to be used.

As a Gmail user, I’m really excited Google is taking active steps in going above and beyond the call of duty when it comes to Spam filtering and instead focusing on filtering emails that are relevant to me and other Gmail users. Let me know what you think of this feature.

Via: PC World