The charm of Smart Reply comes to Gmail

I find this so oddly delightful—and kind of the polar opposite of my car’s door handles.

See, the latter are supposed to be magical, automatically popping out when I approach the car. In practice, though, they’re unreliable enough (e.g. when my key is buried in my pocket, which of course is inevitably when my hands are full) that the they feel like a net negative. Something that used to work just fine, and that is now supposed to be an improvement, leaves me stressed & a bit bummed out.

Smart Replies are on the opposite end of the spectrum: They never used to exist, and even when they aren’t relevant, I’m reminded of the old bit about a dog walking on its hind legs: It’s not done well, but you’re charmed to see it done at all.

Anyway, you can check it out today in Gmail on Android and iOS:

Smart Reply utilizes machine learning to give you better responses the more you use it. So if you’re more of a “thanks!” than a “thanks.” person, we’ll suggest the response that’s, well, more you! If you want to learn about the smarts behind Smart Reply, check out the Google Research Blog.

And yes, you should now have email exchanges with colleagues composed entirely of Smart Replies. “Thanks, I will!” 🙂

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2 thoughts on “The charm of Smart Reply comes to Gmail

  1. Back when you worked at the scarlet letter, I recall your email replies often came in pairs. The first reply responded to whatever the topic of the message was.

    Several minutes later, you’d get the second message: “Hi, I’m out of the office this week, returning next Monday – I’ll get back to you then.”

  2. I saw this today in my Gmail. To be honest, the way they look kind of generic and don’t match the rest of the UI made me think the sender of the email had done some kind of embedded image trickery. No way was I going to tap one of those.

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