Google has let users of Yahoo- and Microsoft-owned email clients use its Gmail Android app for quite some time, but Google is now doing even more to accommodate those non-Gmail users. The company today announced a new feature, "Gmailify," that brings added benefits Gmail users enjoy like inbox organization, spam protection, and Google Now cards to non-Gmail accounts. The feature works only through its Android Gmail app and on the web, and it's restricted to Yahoo, Outlook, and Hotmail accounts. Google plans on adding more email providers down the line.
To use Gmailify, you have to log into your non-Gmail account through the Gmail mobile app or over at mail.google.com, go to the settings panel, and hit "Link Accounts." Google says your mail will now be sorted into its social, promotions, and updates categories while travel and hotel information gleaned from your mail will show up in Google Now. You'll also get faster search capabilities. You can unlink the accounts at any time. If this is your first time using Google's client with a non-Gmail account, you'll need to create a new Gmail address to link to.
Every large tech company wants to manage your email
Email may not be the hottest piece of tech these days, but every big company with a stake in online communications wants to keep users inside their ecosystem. Microsoft today launched its redesigned Outlook.com out of preview, and the new email portal integrates with the features and fresh look of the company's Office 365 suite. And Yahoo, back in December, announced it would let you manage your Gmail accounts from within Yahoo Mail. So while Gmail, with more than 1 billion monthly active users as of this month, may be winning the email battle by way of numbers, it still has to try and pull in users who just won't leave behind an old account on a competing platform.