‘Unsend’ officially arrives in Gmail

Google’s Gmail has been hinting various version of an ‘unsend’ feature for months nwo, and users have been asking for this feature for years. Now though, the feature has become a reality. This new feature is especially interesting given the fact that Google will give users the ability to unsend, after previously requiring a court order to “unsend” a message.

The move is an interesting one because it’s something that Google has been reluctant to include. However, users now have the option of choosing between 5 and 30 seconds for recall time. In that period, the user would theoretically have the ability to rescind a message – should they feel regret upon sending it.

That being said though, the feature will require some work to actually get going. This isn’t a feature that will be setup by default. However, users can quickly change their settings by going into the ‘general’ settings tab in Gmail. At that point, they can quickly choose to run it, or leave it off. Then, they will also be prompted to choose the amount of time that they would like to have the “unsend” option available.


Google announced the update through its lab, and pointed out that it was set up for rapid release. This meant that users would be getting the update and the feature within just two weeks of it being formally released. Google said in the statement announcing the move that, “‘Undo Send’ allows people using Gmail to cancel a sent mail if they have second thoughts immediately after sending.”


The one knock on the new feature is that it doesn’t do much to help those who have sent an email, and then regret sending it the next day. This is a problem that it looks like will remain unchanged moving forward. Google did the right thing in this regard though, because this feature was one of the most highly demanded features of all-time.

For those who want to change the status of their inbox immediately, the feature is available in the ‘general’ settings, and turning it on is as simple as executing the few steps talked about above. At this point, it’s a matter of choice. Switching is easy, but even if you set it for thirty seconds, those who have instant-regret, better have that regret quickly, or that message will still send.