Google recently rolled out an update for Gmail for Android and iOS that adds a dedicated Meet tab to the app. Google is heavily pushing on integrating Meet with Gmail to make it easier for people to join video meetings given their rise in usage during this pandemic. The feature was initially rolled out to all G Suite users and Google has now rolled it out to all Android users.
Google is basically using Gmail here to heavily push Meet for video calling purposes. The company does not want its solution to remain behind Zoom which has emerged as one of the most popular video conferencing services amidst the pandemic. To say the least, the Meet tab in Gmail is annoying especially for people who do not rely on it for video calls. If you are in the same boat as me, the good thing is that you can disable the Meet tab in the Gmail app. Here's how.
Step 1: Open the Gmail app on your phone. Bring up the hamburger menu by swiping to the right from the left edge of the display or tapping the 3-dot menu button on the top-left corner.
Step 2: Go to Settings followed by the Google account synced to your device. If you have multiple Gmail accounts synced to your device, you can have the Meet tab show up on a per-account basis. This means you can have the Meet tab show up when you are checking your office mails but have it disabled for your personal inbox.
Step 3: From the Gmail account settings page, scroll to the Meet section and disable the 'Show the Meet tab for video calling' option.
Google is also bringing Chat and Rooms tab to the Gmail app for Android. This will allow you to directly create and schedule new tasks, jump into conversations, and more right from within the app. Hopefully, Google will also offer the option to disable these tabs in the Gmail app.