Google Is Killing Gmail’s Basic HTML Version

Google Is Killing Gmail’s Basic HTML Version

Google is removing its Basic HTML view on all Gmail accounts starting in January 2024, according to a notice on the company’s Support Page. The company quietly confirmed the change on its site but did not provide additional information about why it is removing the HTML option.

The company reportedly sent an email to some users on Hacker News which says: “We’re writing to let you know that the Gmail Basic HTML view for desktop web and mobile web will be disabled starting early January 2024.” It added: “The Gmail Basic HTML views are previous versions of Gmail that were replaced by their modern successors 10+ years ago and do not include full Gmail feature functionality.”

The exact date for when Google will disable its HTML view is unknown, but Google stated on its Support Page that “You can display Gmail on your browser in Basic HTML view until January 2024. After this date, Gmail automatically changes to Standard view.”

Gmail’s HTML view option was introduced more than ten years ago with the added benefit of loading information quickly so users can access it on older or outdated devices with slower connection speeds. Although aspects of Gmail like chat, spell checker, search filters, and keyboard shortcuts are useful, eliminating the simple HTML view was criticized for not accounting for the needs of the visually impaired.

Pratik Patel, a self-described “blind technologist … who finds himself championing #accessibility for fun and necessity,” argued against Google’s decision in a Mastodon post. “I know many #blind people who use GMail’s HTML view. Not only will they be confused but will be unhappy,” he wrote.

Google did not immediately respond to Gizmodo’s request for comment.

The Cheapest NBN 50 Plans

It’s the most popular NBN speed in Australia for a reason. Here are the cheapest plans available.

At Gizmodo, we independently select and write about stuff we love and think you'll like too. We have affiliate and advertising partnerships, which means we may collect a share of sales or other compensation from the links on this page. BTW – prices are accurate and items in stock at the time of posting.