For anyone who uses IFTTT (If This Then That), a free web-based service to create chains of simple conditional statements via applets, be aware that Gmail integration is about to be broken in a big way. Simply put, every IFTTT action and trigger for Gmail will stop working at the end of the month, save for "Send and email" and "Send yourself an email."
Those are the only two functions that will remain. Everything else has been marked as "inactive," and as a result, many IFTTT applets that use those functions have already stopped working. The rest will join them on March 31.
March 31 is when Google will implement previously announced changes to its API ecosystem. Unfortunately for IFTTT users, those changes would require too much work to factor into continued support for Gmail.
"The changes being made to Gmail would have required massive refactoring in how we integrated Gmail with the IFTTT platform. It would have created a lot more overhead than we had before, and the experience for users would have been degraded as a result. These updates would have made continuing to maintain the Gmail service unsustainable," IFTTT stated in a blog post.
"After some communication with Google's team, we were able to keep the two remaining actions without introducing major infrastructure changes. Unfortunately, we weren't able to keep the triggers and the Create a draft action as we'd hoped," IFTTT added.
IFTTT does not hold any ill feelings toward Google, saying it has a "good relationship" with the company and supports its efforts to improve privacy and security. That is really what the API changes are all about. They are a direct result of criticism Google faced last fall when it confirmed that it allowed third-party developers to access private information belonging to Gmail users, so long as the developers were upfront about the data they collected.
Google has since placed new restrictions on applications that use Gmail data. While the additional restrictions are for the better, they come at the expense of full IFTTT support, which is a bummer for IFTTT users.