Read receipt with Gmail

Many Gmail users feel the lack of function “Read receipt email” or email with return receipt that lets you know when our correspondent has opened an email message. Gmail does not use this feature for a number of reasons quite understandable, but as we will see later, thanks to a small free extension for Chrome, you can enable a read email even on Gmail!

Why Gmail does not provide the function of a read?

Gmail does not provide the read receipt for their email because it is a technique rather antiquated and absolutely not reliable.

How does a read email? In a very simplistic, when through a mail program (As Outlook, Mail, Notes, Thunderbird, etc... ) require to have a read of an email, the server transmits along with the mail message a special “command” asking the recipient's mail server, or to the recipient's mail program to send an email message to the sender that standard informs the sender that the message was displayed by the recipient.
It is indeed a “request” not binding.
In the past almost all sites and all mail clients automatically sent confirmations Default Read, then with the passage of time and with the proliferation of the phenomenon “Privacy” almost all have now changed this policy, asking each time the user recipient of a mail if you want to send read receipt.

Gmail has chosen not to apply the user and never send a read receipt to ensure the privacy of its users.

There is also to point out that the “read receipt” not a guarantee that the recipient has read the mail, It might as well just have it open by accident without having seen the content.

Regardless Gmail therefore, there may be situations such as these:a situation could be:

  • You sent an email with confirmation of reading, the recipient has read the mail, but for the reasons described above do not receive, and you never receive confirmation of reading
  • You sent an email, you have received confirmation of reading, but the recipient does not actually read the message

If despite these explanations, remain still bound to a read, we'll explain in a few simple steps how to activate the read receipt with Gmail.

How to enable read receipt with Gmail


  • un account Gmail
  • il browser Google Chrome

1)Go to the website and press the button “Gmail”.

2) You agree to download the extension for Chrome SideKick using the button “Add do Chrome”

3) just log in with your gmail account and allow you to SideKick use your GMail account for authentication

Once the operation is complete, when you go to compose a new ever with Gmail Chrome, you will find at the bottom, where there is a button to send the email, graphics changed (extension SideKick)

By checking on the box shown in Figure, you will require to have a read receipt for your email.

The new mail notifications appear accessed in real time via the Chrome Notification, or you can consult them by clicking on the icon of SideKick in Google Chrome:
you can see the list of email and related read receipts, subdividing the mails between:

  • ALL (all)
  • OPENED (Email open)
  • NOT OPENED (Unopened)

And’ good to know thatlthough this system has major constraints and to know we understand how it works: SideKick to track your email and see if they are displayed on pc destintario to send a read receipt, part of the body of a message to a very small image collegmanto silent saved on the servers of SideKick.

The image has a unique identifier, Therefore, when the addressee receives the email will ask you to download one small picture, in fact communicating with SideKick that the mail was opened.

Again because of privacy though, many websites or programs consultation mail, to protect users from possible tracking, avoid immediately show the images in the email (there will in fact happened several times that the mails are free of images, and you have to give indication that there are shown). Here's an example of a message delivered by a mail program:
“To ensure privacy, It was prevented from downloading images from remote sites. Show images”

If the recipient agrees to view images, you will receive a confirmation notification that he has opened the email.

Satisfied? Not so much? This is the maximum that can be achieved :)