By Stephen Schenck | September 25, 2013 4:17 PM
Mid-week slump got you feeling down? Tired about hearing of far-off smartphone launches and craving something new and interesting that’s here now? We might have just the thing for you, at least if you’re an Android user, with Google announcing some significant updates to both Gmail and its Hangout apps this afternoon.
Hangouts replaced Talk this past summer, and that transition was met with more than a little resistance. One of the bigger frustrations it led to was users no longer being aware if the people they were attempting to contact were even online in the first place. This new update solves that with a simple green/gray indicator to reflect on/offline status. Google also adds the ability to hide contacts, repositions Hangout invites, and offers new tools for browsing through your contacts.
Gmail’s update is more about look-and-feel, giving an overhaul to its conversation display, making it easier to follow a long chain of emails with a card-based layout. You’ll also find news tools for selecting multiple messages, as well as an indication as to whether or not your account is configured to auto-sync with Google’s servers.
Both updates are on their way out now, so keep an eye out for each.