Better Inline Previews for your Gmail

Gmail offers inline previews for a couple of popular web services including YouTube, Flickr, Picasa and Yelp. What that means is if someone sends you a link to a YouTube video in an email, you can watch that video right inside your Gmail mailbox without clicking the link. You can similarly preview Flickr photo albums and Yelp ratings of places in the email itself.

Inline previews improve your Gmail experience but they aren’t enabled by default - you’ll have to turn them on manually from the Labs tab under Gmail -> Settings.

Gmail Inline Previews

Gmail introduced inline previews in 2009 but they never expanded the scope beyond YouTube and Flickr. A new Chrome extension called Iframely builds upon on the concept of inline previews and add support for nearly every web service that’s out there including Facebook, SlideShare, Instagram, Vimeo, Imgur, Tumblr and Twitter.

With Iframely installed, you can not only preview almost any link that’s included in your email message but also read full web pages inside your mailbox. For instance, if a friend has sent you a link to a news story from the New York Times or the CNN website, you can read that full story inside Gmail without opening new tabs in the browser.

It also supports Instagram photos, Soundcloud audio clips, Twitter tweets (if the message contains a link to a tweet, you can read the corresponding tweet), watch Vimeo videos - all inside your Gmail.

Bonus Feature: Add Inline Images in Gmail

Iframely offers another useful feature for your outgoing message. While you are writing an email inside Gmail, just paste a link to any web image - like an Instagram photo - and Iframely will automatically insert the corresponding picture as an inline image to your email message.

Gmail Inline Image

Chrome may sometimes display a mixed content warning since some of the embedded content could be served from non-https websites - you can click the shield in the address bar to remove the warning. [Instragram credit: Ashu Mittal]

Amit Agarwal

Amit Agarwal

Google Developer Expert, Google Cloud Champion

Amit Agarwal is a Google Developer Expert in Google Workspace and Google Apps Script. He holds an engineering degree in Computer Science (I.I.T.) and is the first professional blogger in India.

Amit has developed several popular Google add-ons including Mail Merge for Gmail and Document Studio. Read more on Lifehacker and YourStory


Awards & Titles

Digital Inspiration has won several awards since it's launch in 2004.

Google Developer Expert

Google Developer Expert

Google awarded us the Google Developer Expert award recogizing our work in Google Workspace.

ProductHunt Golden Kitty

ProductHunt Golden Kitty

Our Gmail tool won the Lifehack of the Year award at ProductHunt Golden Kitty Awards in 2017.

Microsoft MVP Alumni

Microsoft MVP Alumni

Microsoft awarded us the Most Valuable Professional (MVP) title for 5 years in a row.

Google Cloud Champion

Google Cloud Champion

Google awarded us the Champion Innovator title recognizing our technical skill and expertise.

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