Save Gmail Attachments Directly to Google Drive

Lately, Google is in the time-saving business, following Monday’s quick action button expansion with a Gmail update that allows users to view and save attachments directly to Google Drive.

“You’re probably used to downloading email attachments, but each of those files takes time to download, eats up space on your device, and can get buried deep inside your ‘Downloads’ folder,” Google’s director of product management, Scott Johnston, wrote in a blog post “With today’s update to Gmail, you can skip that whole process.”

Instead, he explained, users can view attachments and save files directly to Google Drive without leaving the Gmail Web or mobile app.

Take the new system for a whirl by opening any email with attachments. You’ll find a preview of the enclosed spreadsheet, PDF, text file, or adorable family photos. Click the thumbnail for an expanded, full-screen view; users can browse multiple attachments within the app, as well.

Need to save that database your boss sent over? Just hover your mouse over the file preview and click the Google Drive button, then choose a folder for safekeeping. To download the attachment directly to your computer, tap the arrow button instead.

The Gmail update is available now for all desktop users, and will continue rolling out to mobile phones and tablets over the next week.

“If you’re one of the more than 120 million active Drive users, you know that saving your files to Drive lets you get to them from any computer, phone or tablet,” Johston said. “And if you aren’t taking advantage of Drive just yet, give it a try with your next Gmail attachment.”

Google knows you’re busy, especially gearing up to the holiday season. To ease users’ stress, the search giant yesterday announced the expansion of its quick action buttons, first launched in May. The Gmail feature allows for simple tasks, like RSVPing to an event invitation, directly from your inbox.

Now, YouTube, Vimeo, and Dropbox uploaders can more quickly access videos and documents, while Seamless orderers and OpenTable reservers can rate and review restaurants without leaving Gmail. This week’s new features come as Google gears up to face wiretapping charges over Gmail scanning.

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