Newest Google apps bring welcome changes to Gmail

As is usually the case, a major update to one of Google's applications brings out a new version of what's popularly known as "Gapps or Gbits" -- a collection of all of Google's closed source applications for Android.  Updating the voice search application to include voice actions brings them out this time, and some changes to the Gmail app along with.

As you can see above, the message headers are smaller and bunched at the top of the window, and it really does make a difference if you like to mark messages with a star for later action.  Other changes are a new reply button, which opens a small bubble with reply options (meaning you don't have to scroll all the way through a long message to reply or forward), and the choice of whether to include quoted text with a reply. Screen shots of both these are after the break.  These are now included by default in CyanogenMod, expect to see it in other Froyo custom ROMS soon.  Sorry, these changes are Froyo only.  Don't shoot the messenger!  Holler out if you have found any of the "Lots more cool stuff" we haven't seen yet.

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Jerry Hildenbrand
Senior Editor — Google Ecosystem

Jerry is an amateur woodworker and struggling shade tree mechanic. There's nothing he can't take apart, but many things he can't reassemble. You'll find him writing and speaking his loud opinion on Android Central and occasionally on Twitter.

  • Wasn't this released a couple days ago I'm pretty sure Cyanogen included it with the RC2 release of CM6 for the Evo.
  • I have the new Voice Search and am on a stock N1 with Froyo... but I don't see this feature. Anyone else?
  • Original droid Froyo FRG01B (root) with the new Voice Search and not here either.
  • Also on Original Droid Froyo FRG01B, no root, have the new voice search and no new gmail. I actually have the option for quoted text when replying, but the new header is not there.
  • Still no FROYO on my droid, scared to think that i might not get it
  • Your Droid should get froyo, may take time though. Don't worry.
  • they said that the update is untill the 18th. one more day
  • Yeah, I don't see it on mine either and I'm rockin' the same stuff you guys are.
  • Y'all fools need to Get cm rc3. It blows everything else away
  • um yeah, what he said. ^^^
  • and using a spam email as demonstration? cool idea..
  • new voice search on my CM6 RC2 evo RoCKs
  • I don't see the headers or the reply button on my stock Droid running Froyo. The checkbox for including quoted text has been there for a while, though.
  • Jerry: If you insist on posting stuff that only EXISTS in a non stock rom, just come out and SAY SO.
  • These are now included by default in CyanogenMod, expect to see it in other Froyo custom ROMS soon. Like that?^^
  • Jerry, By the way your article is worded, it really sounds like there was an update to the apps already for "stock" phones and that the ROMs are slowly working to integrate it.
  • Not seeing this on my stock FRF91 Nexus One :(
  • 2.2.1 APK here: via
  • Check this thread. If you have root, you can install. Works on my FRG01B droid.
  • Specifically here: I just downloaded it, and since I didn't have a usb cable for my computer, I emailed it to myself, and installed it on my phone via email, right from the gmail app itself! Worked no problem. On a Nexus One, stock, non rooted. Confusing article, but at least I got an updated gmail app out of it, thanks for posting the link.
  • I don't believe the gapps are included in a CM Rom, it's a add on. I think Google asked Cyanogen not to include those apps in his roms.
  • Download the gmail from the market.
  • just looked in the market but no show. non-rooted evo 2.2
  • Sorry. I found it there before CM put it in the gapps package. My Nexus is rooted so it is hard to know if what is seen in the Market differs from a non-rooted phone.
  • I have this on my dinc. I just rooted the other day with ota leak and installed the new voice app. So i do not know which one it came with but i really like it.
  • Anything else worth downloading from that zip file
  • Cool, as far I can see they moved the buttons, from the bottom(annoying) to the top. Going to try it. :)
  • I don't the gmail app has been updated, but you can only get the updated version if you install a custom ROM??
  • That's what it smells like. Ever since Froyo on my EVO (that rhymes!), my secondary Gmail account no longer syncs and now the new and improved Gmail is only on ROMs that 99% of users won't touch?!? Really?!?
  • I have a stock Droid with Froyo, and I'm not seeing this new GMail app. Straight out, how do I get this? It doesn't show up in the Market. Thanks.
  • The most misleading article I've read in ages. It sounded like the gmail changes were bundled in the Action Voice app by Google! NOT. You NEEEEEEED Cyanogen Rom to see these changes. pfft
  • Well I'm on the X and if I've rea
    d everything right I won't see froyo for a while. The original Droid and the Inc will get this before we X's do.
  • I'm on a DROID running 2.2 that I installed by grabbing the update file manually. I am rooted, using EasyRoot, but I'm not running a custom ROM or kernel. I just installed the gmail.apk from the link above, and I've got the new goodness. So:
    You do need 2.2 (Froyo)
    You do need to be rooted
    You DON'T have to run a custom ROM Other goodness: Ever try to copy text from gmail? Couldn't before (see Can now--it's down in the menu under More. Yay!
  • I am on Droid 1 running 2.2 (not rooted). I grabbed the gmail.apk from xda.developers site and installed it manually. It works great.
  • Me too. Works fine.
  • i'm running a custom rom on my droid 1 (sapphire 1.0 froyo 2.2 build frg01b) and when i installed the new voice search update, it made my voice searches and blue tooth dialing suck. i was speaking loud and clear into my motorola t505 BT speakerphone and my phone kept failing in figuring out whom i wanted to call. after i uninstalled the voice search update, my voice dialing worked great again.
  • I was able to download the .apk and it installed right over old gmail app. Everything seems to working fine. Non-rooted HTC EVO
  • Same here! :)
  • Wow, way to confuse the sh*t out of everyone, myself included. First of all, the updated Gmail app does NOT come with CM6. Quite a while back Google issued a C&D which forced Cyanogen to start packaging the Gapps separate that must be flashed after a fresh install of the ROM. If you simply upgrade from a different version of CM6 to RC3, you will NOT get the new Gmail app. You must flash to new Gapps zip that Cyanogen has packaged and put a link up for on xda. And installing the new Voice Search app does NOT update your Gmail app. You can flash the new Gapps zip on top of any version of CM, or probably any FroYo ROM for that matter. Jeez, someone who knows wtf they are talking about really ought to be proof-reading these articles. Get your facts straight...
  • On my unrooted stock FRF91 Nexus One I simply extracted the Gmail.apk from the zip file and sent it to my dropbox account. Opened Dropbox on my Nexus One, selected the Gmail.apk, system tells its a system file and do i still want to install it. I say Ok. Job done. Gmail app updated. No root required.
  • Grabbed the .apk from here: Upgraded Gmail on a non-rooted Droid 1 with Froyo and it works fine. Really would like to see those promised improvements to the stock email app, though. We STILL can't forward Exchange emails...
  • This article is confusing. It makes it sound as if Google made small updates to the Gmail app, that are applied when a user updates the Voice Search app. So I am assuming we will be seeing this in an OTA update? Perhaps it will be Nexus One only OTA?
  • chrome to phone that XDA link if you don't have a USB
  • I didn't read the plethora of different comments, but wanted to put in my 2 cents...
    If you don't have this version of Gmail, then you need to go to this website: Once you get there, you need to check the table to figure out whether you need to download the MDPI or HDPI version of google's apps. Then, make sure to download the most recent version of google's apps and flash it. Reboot and poof! You've now got the newest Gmail that this article is talking about.
    Good luck and enjoy!
  • This is absolutely ridiculous and is why I laugh when people say that Android is equal to or has passed IOS as an operating system. So, I have Froyo on my Evo, not rooted, it's a GOOGLE app and I have to jump through all these hoops to update it? And If I don't go to a website devoted to Android, I wouldn't even know about the update? I love my Evo-- great hardware-- but I hate this type of stuff with the OS. It's so half-assed. This would NEVER happen on an Apple device. Even if you're jail-broken, you get notified about updates in the Cydia store. The average person one, won't even know this update exists-- which looks good BTW, although it's basic UI improvements that should have been there from the get go-- and two, will never be able to figure out how to update it if they do.
  • This app update is probably not meant to be released yet. Someone got hold of it and released it into the wild. When Google feels it is ready for EVERYONE then they will put the update in the Market or it will show up in an official over-the-air system update. It's not "half-assed". You're dealing with a flexible and OPEN operating system environment that has a community of both regular users AND hackers that like to tinker. You may want the extra features sooner, and if you do, you have the option to seek out these beta builds/app updates. Otherwise, be patient and wait for an official update.
  • I'm on an Evo, running stock 2.2 non-rooted that I installed by grabbing the RUU file manually. I just installed the gmail2.2.1.apk from the link above, and it worked like a charm. So:
    You do need 2.2 (Froyo)
    You do not need to be rooted
    You DON'T have to run a custom ROM
    You will probably need to allow the apk to be installed by changing the option about non-market apk being able to be installed. There is a option in settings to this affect.