Google Messages, one of the most widely used messaging apps on Android, is set to receive a subtle yet significant quality-of-life improvement. Users will soon be able to mark conversations as read or unread with a simple swipe gesture, adding a new level of convenience to the app’s main conversation list. This addition, observed in the beta version 20230515_01_RC00, signifies Google‘s commitment to refining the user experience and streamlining inbox management.
Previously, Google Messages offered swipe actions for archiving or deleting conversations, which were deemed a bit too simplistic for some users when accessed from the app’s home screen. However, these options proved invaluable in combating spam. For those who preferred a different approach, the app allowed disabling of swipe gestures altogether.
In the latest beta update, Google Messages users have reported the appearance of a new “Mark as read or unread” option when swiping conversations in the main conversation list. This new addition allows for quick triage of incoming messages, eliminating the need for the cumbersome process of long-pressing a conversation and navigating through an overflow menu to mark it as read or unread.
The inclusion of the “Mark as read or unread” swipe action within the main conversation list builds upon the existing “Mark as read” option available in the Android notification sheet. This feature unifies the experience across different areas of the app, providing users with a consistent and intuitive interface. It also offers a seamless transition between managing notifications and organizing conversations directly from the main message list.
The new swipe action is currently being tested on several Pixel devices running the Google Messages beta. While the exact timeline for a wider rollout remains undisclosed, this addition showcases Google’s ongoing commitment to enhancing user convenience and refining the messaging experience. Users can anticipate a smoother and more efficient workflow once the update becomes widely available.