Google is here to make you look a whole lot less silly, thanks to new AI-powered spelling and grammar correction capabilities for Gmail.
Google announced the new functionality this week, and it includes more intelligent spell-check suggestions and improved grammar corrections.
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As you type, Google will use artificial intelligence to detect grammar issues and highlight alternative spelling suggestions. You’ll also be able to watch common spelling mishaps correct themselves, meaning no more hitting Send before noticing you’ve used the wrong ‘there’.
“If you’re working against deadlines to write a lot of emails daily, correct spelling and grammar probably isn’t top of mind,” explained Google in a blog post.
“These capabilities can also help you write and edit with more confidence if you’re a non-native speaker. With our AI-first approach, you can communicate smarter and faster, without sweating the small stuff.”
Once you start typing, you’ll notice a blue line appear below incorrect grammar, and a red line appear under misspelt words. A dashed line will show that an error has been autocorrected.
You can click on any underlined words or phrases to scroll through Google’s own spelling suggestions or to undo an autocorrect mistake if the AI gets a bit too cocky and makes the wrong call.
Obviously, AI tools aren’t flawless, and Google isn’t claiming that the new Gmail autocorrect system will be perfect.
As it has written in its Help Centre: “Spelling and grammar suggestions are powered by machine learning. As language understanding models use billions of common phrases and sentences to automatically learn about the world, they can also reflect human cognitive biases.”
This said, these added capabilities will doubtless be a handy tool for those of us that are prone to dropping silly mistakes and embarrassing typos in important emails, as well as a huge help to users typing emails in a second or third language.
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The new tool began rolling out yesterday, and the rollout is expected to be completed by September 12. As soon as it hits your account, the spelling and grammar correction feature will be switched on automatically.
If you’re not interested and would like to disable the feature, you can open up your Settings menu, click General, and toggle Grammar, Spelling and Autocorrect off.