Google reportedly plans to increase the number of ads in Gmail
Google has sparked concerns among Gmail users as it appears to be increasing the number of ads displayed in the email service, according to multiple online reports and social media posts. While ads have long been a part of Gmail’s interface to generate revenue and keep the service free, they have typically been distinguishable from regular emails.
However, recent changes suggest that Google is now embedding ads within users’ inboxes, making them more difficult to differentiate from legitimate messages. Screenshots shared by users show ads that are designed to look like regular emails, as well as larger interactive ads with images and other content.
The introduction of these new ad formats has occurred without any official announcement from Google. In fact, the Gmail Twitter account responded to a user’s complaint about ads in the middle of the inbox by saying, “doesn’t sound good.” The changes seem to be rolling out gradually to some users, with others not yet experiencing the new ad style. Reports indicate that the changes are visible across all Gmail interfaces, including the mobile app and web access.
It’s important to note that Gmail users who choose to use alternative email clients like the Apple Mail app or Outlook will not be affected by Gmail’s ads.
In response to the reports, Google stated that they are constantly experimenting with ad formats and aiming to help users discover and connect with new businesses. They explained that the Promotions tab displays promotional emails from subscribed businesses, as well as offers and deals from companies that might interest users. Google rolled out instream ads in the Promotions tab on mobile last year and expanded them to desktop in recent months.
Google also emphasized that they do not sell email data or utilize users’ content from apps like Gmail, Drive, and Photos for advertising purposes.
Earlier this year, Google made changes to ad transparency by launching the Ads Transparency Center. This platform allows users to review details such as previous ads run by a company, regions where those ads were shown, and the ad’s historical data.
As Gmail users express concerns about the increased presence of ads within their inboxes, it remains to be seen how Google will respond and whether any adjustments will be made to the ad placement in Gmail.