In an attempt to improve transparency, Google is adding new settings to help you control smart features and personalization in Gmail, Meet, and other Google services. The new feature builds on the company’s previous efforts to let users auto-delete web and location history.
Smart features in Gmail refers to convenient additions like automatic email filtering, tabbed inbox, summary cards above emails, Smart Compose, and Smart Reply. Going forward, you will see a toggle that lets you choose if you would like to continue using smart features. You can also turn the setting off if you don’t often rely on them.
Another change is with respect to personalization based on your Gmail, Chat, and Meet data. Choosing to personalize this data offers you features such as Assistant reminders for your bills, the option to view restaurant reservations in Maps, and loyalty cards & tickets for Google Pay (not Tez). Disabling the toggle limits access to all the aforesaid features and you can turn them back on whenever you want from Gmail’s settings.
Google acknowledges these new controls are not new. In fact, you can separately disable all of these features right now. However, the company is aiming to make the process easier for all Gmail users with these new quick toggles.
“What’s new is a clearer choice over the data processing that makes them possible. This new setting is designed to reduce the work of understanding and managing that process, in view of what we’ve learned from user experience research and regulators’ emphasis on comprehensible, actionable user choices over data,” explains Google.
Google says it will roll out the new controls for smart features and personalization in the coming weeks. Once available, we could expect the company to send out a pop-up notification to alert users.