Searching your Gmail inbox just became much less traumatic

Gmail
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Google has released an update to its email service (opens in new tab) Gmail that should help users locate specific messages more efficiently.

In a blog post (opens in new tab), the company details a tweak to the Gmail (opens in new tab) search function, which will now also collect results linked with email aliases, often used to create shared inboxes.

“When you search for an email address in Gmail, we’ll now show all emails associated with that specific email address and any aliases it’s part of,” Google explains. “These results will be pulled from the to, from, cc, and bcc fields, or anywhere in the email.”

The update has already been rolled out to all Google Workspace (opens in new tab) customers, but it is unclear whether users of the free Gmail service will benefit. The firm has not yet responded to our request for clarification.

Gmail search update

As Google describes it, “an email alias is an alternate address for receiving mail, used in addition to a user’s primary address”. And there are a number of different ways users might put this feature to use.

For example, aliases allow for messages to be delivered to multiple people at once; all members of a specific business department, for instance. They also provide a way for anyone that has married into a new name or whose company has undergone a rebrand to switch their address without creating a new account.

However, searching for emails sent to or from email aliases was previously a little difficult, often requiring the user to run searches for each individual alias associated with the person whose email they are trying to locate.

According to Google, the Gmail update will make search results more comprehensive, minimizing the chances that multiple searches will need to be performed, which anyone with a particular overcrowded inbox will celebrate.

Users that would prefer to receive a more concise set of search results, meanwhile, can enclose the query or specific email address in quotation marks.

Joel Khalili
News and Features Editor

Joel Khalili is the News and Features Editor at TechRadar Pro, covering cybersecurity, data privacy, cloud, AI, blockchain, internet infrastructure, 5G, data storage and computing. He's responsible for curating our news content, as well as commissioning and producing features on the technologies that are transforming the way the world does business.