During the busy holidays, who can say no to a little extra help? Inbox makes it easy to focus on your priorities by adding Reminders right to the top of your inbox, but we all know how easy it is to “save” to-dos for later. This is why Inbox provides over twenty different types of Assists–handy pieces of info to help you with the next step. Below are a few ways to give them a try, as well as a quick look behind the scenes.

To start, simply add an email address, phone number or link to a reminder.

Next, you could add a reminder to pick up your friend at the airport, pack for your trip to New York or watch a video. Assists may provide your friend’s flight status, a weather report for the Big Apple or a link to that video.

There’s actually a lot going on behind the scenes to make Assists work. For example, phone numbers and business hours come from Google Maps and customer support numbers from Google’s Knowledge Graph. Your contacts and other emails (like flight confirmations, purchase receipts or bill notifications) also help Inbox provide Assists.

Some Assists even combine information from multiple sources to give you what you need. For example, when you create a reminder to return a product you purchased, the purchase date and business from your confirmation email, the business’s return policy from the Knowledge Graph, and the current date all combine to give you a countdown of how many days you have left to return your purchase.

Another category of Assists are questions that, when answered, lead to another Assist. For example, if you want to call your dentist, Inbox will ask you who your dentist is and once answered, provide a link to call them.

And starting today, Assists are getting even better based on your requests to make them easier to discover. Assists now help you create Reminders faster by providing smart suggestions as you type (or tap!). If a suggestion has an icon next to it, that means you’re guaranteed an assist.

We hope Assists will save you a bit of time over the holidays. As always, if you aren’t using Inbox yet and would like an invite, email inbox@google.com and we’ll email you as soon as more invites are available.

PS: In the spirit of saving time, Inbox on Android now works with Android Wear. You can now view messages, mark as done and reply without taking out your phone.


Gmail Blog

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