Google brings Gmail and Google Drive closer together with a new update

Gmail mobile
Gmail mobile (Image credit: Android Central)

What you need to know

  • You'll now be able to directly approve third-party Google Docs access in Gmail.
  • Previously, users would be shunted away to Docs when sent an email notifying them of a request for permission to edit or comment.
  • It's being made available to iOS, Android, and the web.

If you've ever had to share a Google Doc (or other Drive file) with someone, there's always the issue of permissions. Sometimes you don't always have the right ones turned on and then your intended target has to request access for them, prompting you via email to make the changes on your end. It's not a difficult thing, it takes just a click or two, but Google has just made a change to simplify the workflow. Now, you'll be able to grant access requests straight from your Gmail inbox.

The Google Workspace team explained:

Now, Gmail users will be able to manage that request directly from that email, without leaving the message. Specifically, you'll receive a dynamic email that lets you review the request, choose the access level (e.g. edit, comment, or view), and grant access directly from the email.Previously, you had to open the document in a new tab or app to manage the access request. The dynamic email will make it quicker and simpler to manage these requests and control access to your files. It will work for Gmail users on the web, on Android, and on iOS.

The change is rolling out now (and should hit everyone within two weeks) for users who have dynamic email turned on. It should be on by default for most people. If not, check your Gmail settings and toggle it on if that's what you'd prefer.

Such a small change likely plays into Google's overall strategy of treating Gmail as a hub of sorts for its broader set of Workspace apps. The company hopes you'll see its email app as a one-stop-shop for all your productivity needs, and new features like this help reinforce that notion.

Michael Allison