If you use Gmail as your main email provider, keeping track of your emails even when you’re away from your computer is now easier. An extension called Checker Plus for Google Chrome allows you to receive desktop and audio notifications for Gmail. The notifications function even when the Gmail window is closed, making it a handy tool for keeping track of new messages outside of the Gmail app.
The extension can be downloaded free from the Google Web Store. Once installed, you need to log in to your Gmail account to activate it.
When you’re logged in, you will have two new icons – a red Gmail icon on the top right corner in Chrome and a blue bell icon on your desktop taskbar. These two will function together, depending on whether you have a Gmail window open or not.
Your new emails will automatically pop up on the Gmail icon in Chrome, and you can click on it to see a preview of your inbox. You can even reply, delete or mark emails as read from this window. A number beside the icon shows unread mails as well.
By default, the button will open the preview window, which is a drop down interface. However, you can change this to open a Gmail tab instead. This is done by going to the extension’s Options page (gear icon) from the same drop down menu and clicking on the Display tab. Under Button click action, click “Open Gmail tab” instead.
On the other hand, if you close your Gmail tab, the notifications will appear from the task bar (bottom-right corner).
From this pop-up, you have the option to open, delete or mark emails as read. These three options can be changed also from the Options page. Under Desktop Notifications, make sure “Rich Notification” is selected. Below it, you can choose which actions to take for clicking anywhere on the notification and for the two other buttons below it.
If you don’t want desktop notifications when you have your Gmail window/tab open, click on “Do not show notification if you’re already in your Gmail tab” in the same section.
For audio notifications you can adjust the idle time before it is activated. The options range from fifteen seconds to two minutes. This is also found in the extension’s Option page, on the “Notifications” tab under “Voice notifications.”
Here you can select which parts of the email is read: who the email is from, the subject, and the message, or all three.
Checker Plus is a flexible and effective tool for email tracking. In addition to its notification features, it supports multiple accounts, assigning photos to contacts, and monitoring custom Gmail labels. Despite these many features, it runs on the background without affecting your computer’s overall performance. The Options page is well-organized with a tabbed interface that’s straightforward and easy to understand. Whether you’re a new or seasoned Gmail user, this extension will prove useful any time you need immediate alerts for new emails. It takes a few minutes to set up and saves time and effort that you’d rather spend on something else.