Saturday, June 28, 2014

New Gmail API


For a while now, many of you have been asking for a better way to access data to build apps that integrate with Gmail. While IMAP is great at what it was designed for (connecting email clients to email servers in a standard way), it wasn’t really designed to do all of the cool things that you have been working on, which is why this week at Google I/O, we’re launching the beta of the new Gmail API.

Designed to let you easily deliver Gmail-enabled features, this new API is a standard Google API, which gives RESTful access to a user’s mailbox under OAuth 2.0 authorization. It supports CRUD operations on true Gmail datatypes such as messages, threads, labels and drafts.

Update (2014-07-01): Matt Cutts (via ATP):

Just confirmed with right people: IMAP remains fully supported and isn’t going away.


The Gmail API should not be used to replace IMAP for full-fledged email client access. Instead, see IMAP and SMTP.

3 Comments RSS · Twitter

As the execrable Gruber notes, this does make one wonder if Gmail IMAP is a long-lasting feature.

I've been happy to move most of my email to gmail, and I will feel very burnt if IMAP goes away.

"this new API is a standard Google API, which gives RESTful access to a user’s mailbox under OAuth 2.0 authorization"

Google devs wouldn't know REST from a hole in the ground; this is just standard ad-hoc RPC-over-HTTP slop. "RESTful API" is such an oxymoron, any dev who uses it should immediately seek alternate employment, as flipping burgers is all they're really fit for.

Honestly, the Web Programming Profession is the worst thing that's ever happened to the World Wide Web. "Dunning-Kruger Effect" doesn't even begin to cover it.

[...] Gmail finally has a real API. Their old IMAP “API” sucked. Here’s hoping a new version of Mail for Yosemite uses this new API and Mail improves its connection to Gmail. (Although I’ve noticed Apple’s fixed most of my Gmail problems finally – I’m not even getting delayed messages anymore) [...]

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