Love It or Hate It, Autocorrect Is Coming to Gmail

August 21, 2019, 4:10 PM UTC

Smartphone users are about to get some company in their regular refrain of “Damn you autocorrect.” Google is adding the automatic spelling and grammar functionality to Gmail.

The artificial intelligence feature is meant to ensure people don’t inadvertently fire off notes to clients, friends or loved ones that are rife with misspelled words or using the wrong tense. But autocorrect also carries the risk of carrying a note’s meaning with its well-intentioned fixes. (Just ask your friend who sends all the texts about ducks.)

“If you’re working against deadlines to write a lot of emails daily, correct spelling and grammar probably isn’t top of mind,” the company said in a blog post. These capabilities can also help you write and edit with more confidence if you’re a non-native speaker. With our AI-first approach, you can communicate smarter and faster, without sweating the small stuff.”

Google is making the feature automatically enabled for all Gmail users. The rollout started Tuesday, but won’t be complete until Sept. 12.

Spelling and grammatical suggestions will be made inline in draft emails. Sentences with grammar errors will see a squiggly blue line, letting the user decide whether or not to change it.

Misspelled words? Those will be fixed automatically (though if Google has no idea what you’re trying to say, it will mark them with a red squiggly line). Changed words will also be marked, so you can identify and undo the correction if you want.

Don’t want autocorrect or any of the other new features? It’s easy to turn off. Just head to Settings, pick “General” and turn off the elements you don’t want.

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