Not OK Google: Gmail now lets you disable suggestions for your emails

How did Google know to do that? Gmail now lets you turn off Google's message scanning for smart features. — Catherine Waibel/dpa

Gmail's eagerness to help you sort out your inbox and write emails faster by automatically reading all your messages is a welcome help to some and invasive and creepy to others.

Now Google is finally giving us all the option to say "no, thanks" and turn off smart Gmail functions like automatic sorting, message categorisation and smart replies.

Google plans to let Gmail users decide for themselves if and how they automatically read the content of emails in order to provide these smart suggestions, like automatically adding a calendar event for a flight when you get an email with airplane tickets.

To this end, Google has announced new options that will appear in your Gmail settings in the coming weeks.

On the one hand, you'll be able to set whether your data from Gmail, Meet and Chat can be used for smart functions in your mailbox. And on the other hand, you will be able to determine whether this data may or may not be used to personalise other Google products.

Turning off these functions will also limit how helpful the Google Assistant is, and several suggestions will then no longer appear, such as getting a reminder about an invoice or seeing restaurant reservations in Google Maps.

Many of these functions could already be switched on or off, however Google says that the new settings now for the first time allow a clear decision for or against the data evaluation process that makes the functions possible in the first place. – dpa

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