How to get rid of those irritating Chat and Rooms tabs in mobile Gmail

In August 2020, Google decided to add a tab for its Meet videoconferencing platform to Gmail. Not a big deal for the desktop version — although you can still choose to get rid of it if you don’t intend to use Meet at all — but it could be a real issue for the mobile app, because it expanded the bottom margin of the app and gave you approximately three fewer lines to work with. So we provided directions for how to get rid of the Meet tab on your phone.

Now Google has added the ability to access its Chat and Rooms features directly from Gmail. As a result, many people are finding that the tabs are back at the bottom of their mobile screens, once again taking up precious space.

You can get rid of the new tabs the same way you got rid of the “Meet” tab. If you can’t remember how, or if you’re confronting this issue for the first time, here’s how to deal with it. These instructions apply to the Gmail app on both Android and iOS. (Note: your directions may vary slightly depending on your Android phone.)

Select the three-line “hamburger” icon in the upper left corner, scroll down, and tap on “Settings.”

Select the Gmail account you want to change.

On an iPhone, toggle off “Show the chat and rooms tab” near the top of the page. On an Android phone, scroll down to the “Chat” category and uncheck “Show the Chat and Rooms tabs.”

And that’s it! You’ve reclaimed some space on your Gmail app. Incidentally, if you want to show all the tabs — for Chat, Rooms, and Meet — just go back to the same settings page and check (or toggle on) both the “Show the Chat and Rooms tabs” and the “Show the Meet tab for video calling” boxes. All three tabs will appear in a single line at the bottom of the screen.