google, what have you got against choice?

Google is losing a lot of friends lately. Their recent decisions to discontinue iGoogle and Reader are making many people unhappy. Today, to the great dismay of many Gmail users, Gmail's new compose interface - a small box in the corner of your screen - became the default. Google says the previous compose style - the more typical large box in the centre of your screen - will be discontinued.


Why not give us options? If some people like to compose an email in a small box in the corner of their screen, that's grand. They can. And if other people prefer to compose an email in as large a space as possible, in the centre of their screen... well, why can't we?

I do not understand Google's continuing drive to dictate to its users how they should use Google products. The technology to allow for customer choice clearly exists. Why not let users decide how best to use a product? Why does Google care where and how we type our emails? Why not let us decide?

This actually affects me less than many users. At home, on my main (desktop) computer, I use Gmail through Outlook. I use Outlook for email, contacts, calendar, notes, and tasks, and I like having everything in one place. I also prefer Outlook's formatting options, and it syncs easily with my BlackBerry.

But like many people, I use more than one computer, in more than one location, so I also use Gmail's web interface when using my netbook, at work, and any other place I might need email. Having both web and Outlook options is a great fail-safe, too. I frequently go into "internet Gmail" to find something I can't find in "Outlook Gmail".

With this idiotic compose function, I'm not going to want to use Gmail on the web unless absolutely necessary. And if Google keeps this up, I'll be searching for another email solution that isn't so dictatorial.

As far as I can tell, this mandatory compose feature is almost universally hated. You can leave feedback about the new Gmail functions on this Google Plus thread.

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