Today, Google announced a small, but still very useful, feature for Gmail’s many desktop users that should make viewing any videos sent in email attachments much easier.

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June 30, 2017

Previous to today’s update, if you got an video attachment in an email sent to your Gmail account and wanted to watch it, you had to click on the video and have it download to your PC’s hard drive and view it with a third-party media player. Now, today’s update eliminates that middle man. When you see a video attachment in an email, you will now see a thumbnail that, when you click it, automatically streams that video to you, without the need to download it or use a separate player.

Google says that this Gmail desktop update for video uses the same infrastructure that it made for streaming  YouTube videos, along with any video clips stored on Google Drive. While the update is rolling out today, it could take up to 15 days for the new video streaming feature to go live to all Gmail desktop users.

John Callaham
John was a newspaper reporter before becoming a technology and video/PC gaming writer in 2000. He lives in Greer, SC with his wife and five cats.