Feeds

Gmail gains support for non-ASCII email addresses

Chocolate Factory also reveals kill switch for bothersome listbots

Beginner's guide to SSL certificates

Google has decided to give a two-year-old IETF e-mail standard a push towards universal adoption, by switching on support for RFC 6530 international character support in Gmail.

The RFC was crafted to allow people “to use close variations on their own names (written correctly in their own languages and scripts) as mailbox names in email addresses”, rather than being constrained by English character sets.

As the Chocolate Factory notes in its announcement, adopting a new e-mail standard is difficult since every server between sender and recipient has to support the character sets used for addressing.

That creates a chicken-and-egg problem Google wants to solve by jumping first: “In order for this standard to become a reality, every email provider and every website that asks you for your email address must adopt it. That’s obviously a tough hill to climb. The technology is there, but someone has to take the first step,” the post states.

Of course, there's also an upside for Google. If the best way to have e-mail exchanges between people with non-ASCII addresses is for them both to be on Gmail, users will gravitate in that direction. Since most of the anglophone world is saturated with e-mail addresses, support for international character sets gives Google a strong foothold in non-ASCII (or Unicode) growth markets.

However, it will also put pressure on anyone operating a mail server to get RFC 6530 support working, since they won't want to be bouncing messages back to Gmail because they don't support the addresses.

In this sponsored post at CircleID, “Dot Chinese Online” tested Gmail and noted that Google's paid attention to the small details, like converting the “Chinese dot” (a small circle) into an ASCII dot to comply with IETF standards.

In a separate announcement Google is going to bring "unsubscribe" links for list e-mails to the top of the message, next to the "from" address.

"Now when a sender includes an 'Unsubscribe' link in a Promotions, Social or Forums message, Gmail will surface it to the top, right next to the sender address. If you’re interested in the message’s content, it won’t get in the way, and if not, it’ll make it easier to keep your inbox clutter-free", the announcement states. ®

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk

More from The Register

next story
Of COURSE Stephen Elop's to blame for Nokia woes, says author
'Google did have some unique propositions for Nokia'
FCC, Google cast eye over millimetre wireless
The smaller the wave, the bigger 5G's chances of success
It's even GRIMMER up North after MEGA SKY BROADBAND OUTAGE
By 'eck! Eccles cake production thrown into jeopardy
Mobile coverage on trains really is pants
You thought it was just *insert your provider here*, but now we have numbers
Don't mess with Texas ('cos it's getting Google Fiber and you're not)
A bit late, but company says 1Gbps Austin network almost ready to compete with AT&T
prev story

Whitepapers

Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
Cloud and hybrid-cloud data protection for VMware
Learn how quick and easy it is to configure backups and perform restores for VMware environments.
Three 1TB solid state scorchers up for grabs
Big SSDs can be expensive but think big and think free because you could be the lucky winner of one of three 1TB Samsung SSD 840 EVO drives that we’re giving away worth over £300 apiece.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.