Google Chat gets new search filters for Android app

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Google Chat may still not be as feature-filled as other business communication platforms like Slack, Microsoft Teams, etc but we are getting new features every once in a while that may eventually get us there. The newest update brings what Google should be able to do best: improved search filters. After all, Google’s main business is search right? It should now be easier to look for certain conversations, files, links, or whatever it is you’re looking for in your various chats.

When you update your Android app, you’ll be able to narrow down your search results by using the filters for things like rooms/conversations, dates, mentions, links, or attachments. Basically, if you’ve used other business messaging apps, this should be something familiar to you. Currently, when you search for something, it will just bring up the chats and rooms where the word is mentioned which makes it difficult to narrow it down.

The user interface for the search has also been improved for these filters. You get a side-scrolling bubbly bars for your filter options: From, Said In, Attachment, Date, Has Link, Mentions Me. You just need to tap on the option that you want to help narrow things down and finding the message or file that you need. Those using Gmail on desktop will be familiar with the filters as well although the Gmail app doesn’t have them at all.

Google says there are no admin controls needed for this and it will be available not just for Google Workspace customers but for G Suite Basic and Business customers as well. There’s no need to turn on anything in the settings as it will automatically show up in their Google Chat Android app. There doesn’t seem to be a way to turn it off but you probably won’t want to do that anyway.

The new search filters have started rolling out to Google Chat users and should be available in a couple of weeks. It will roll out to iOS by next month.

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