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Gmail themes missing at your account?

Gmail themes missing at your account?

Ever since I wrote about it, I’m getting mails from visitors complaining that Gmail themes are missing from their account and asking me to help them out. So I thought of putting up a small article on how to get these themes up and running if they are absent from your account.

The thing is, Google rolled out this feature for all email accounts – so it would definitely be present on your account too! The question is: Why is the “Themes” tab missing from the Settings section?

You would not see Gmail themes in your account if you are (a) using the older version of Gmail or (b) working on a old unsupported web browser.

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I suppose not many people know that Gmail comes in two flavours or versions, if you like – The standard view and the basic HTML view. The latter is recommended for users on slower internet connections. When you log in to your Gmail account, you’ll get to see the link of the version you are not using in the screen that comes up for a few seconds – check image below.

Gmail loading bar with the version link near the bottom right

And once you get to your inbox, the link to the other version is present near the top right. For instance, I use the standard view and have a link, “Older version”, just to the right of the Settings link.

Link to Gmail's older version

I guess by this time you know why Gmail themes are missing from your account… still didn’t catch the hint? Read on.

Gmail themes missing from your account because you are using the older version

The Gmail themes tab is missing from the Settings because you are using the older Gmail version. To use themes on your account, you need to change to the standard version or the more advanced Gmail version. And this is how you do it.

Log in to your Gmail account. Once you get to the inbox, check for the Newer version link near the top right. You cannot miss it – it’s to the right of the Settings link. By the way, changing the Gmail version will not harm or delete your email messages are information, so go ahead and click on the link.

Link to the newer version of Gmail

When the newer Gmail version loads, you would see some small cosmetic changes in colors and layout. Anyway, to get Gmail themes for your account, hit the Settings link and go to the Themes tab. I suppose you can now take it from here.

Gmail themes available only on new web browsers

You will not be able to use Gmail themes if you are working from an old web browser. This feature is compatible only Internet Explorer 7.0+, Firefox 2.0+, Safari 3.0+ and of course Google’s very own Chrome. If you are still on Internet Explorer version 6 (and many are), you need to upgrade to the next version to get Gmail themes for your email account or better still download and install Chrome or Firefox.

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