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Gmail can now stream video attachments on the desktop

Gmail can now stream video attachments on the desktop

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Opening Day Of The Mobile World Congress
Photo by David Ramos/Getty Images

Google’s making a small but helpful change to desktop Gmail today that’ll be useful for anyone who sends or receives video attachments: from now on, you’ll be able to stream them on the page, rather than having to download the file first.

Video attachments can still be downloaded, but clicking on a file will now pull up a YouTube-style video player that’ll let you play the clip back, adjust quality and sound levels, and even stream it to a Chromecast device. (Though, in my quick test of this feature, I received an error message when trying to play a video — clearly there are some kinks to work out.)

Google says the feature is rolling out to everyone but may take up to 15 days before some users see it.

The feature could be particularly helpful when sending small videos captured on your phone, as it’ll save recipients a step or two before watching them. But the feature is still limited by the fact that Gmail attachments can’t exceed 50MB (and only 25MB when sending), which means you’re on your own if you want to send something longer or in a particularly high resolution.