Gmail's right sidebar makes it easy to access information at a glance. You can view your calendar, your tasks, or your notes right next to your emails, allowing you to cross-reference information and avoid appointment conflicts. And now Google has announced a new addition to the sidebar: Contacts. Once it rolls out to you over the next two weeks, you'll be able to view all of a contact's details neatly organized next to their messages.
The new feature is an improvement over the small cards that appear when you hover over contact images that only provided you with the most basic details like name and organization and some shortcuts for emailing, messaging, and video chatting. When you tap the "More info" button there, the sidebar will open. In it, you'll see the same information and shortcuts, but also phone numbers, addresses, and whether you've received emails or messages from them before. Of course, phone numbers and addresses are only available when you've added them to your contacts yourself.
The current rather basic hover card.
The sidebar is particularly powerful for organizations using Google Workspace. If the details are properly added by admins, employees will be able to see which team coworkers are on, who manages them, their office and desk location, and more.
The new sidebar item has already started rolling out and should be available to all Gmail users over the next two weeks. You'll see the contacts shortcut in your right sidebar once the panel has reached you.