Google announced its plans to start moving its users to the new Gmail design. It will eventually remove the old design entirely and the changes are set to begin next month.
This applies only to G Suite users (users who paid for their accounts via their organization/company) and Google did not comment on whether the changes will be the same for the regular Gmail users.
They will probably be similar considering that the new design was announced for the G Suite users but it was made available to the free users as well at the same time.
For now, no one is forced to use the new design
For the moment no one is forced to use the new design. Now it’s either opt-in or unavailable because your G Suite account’s admin has not enabled it for the moment.
Starting July, admins will have to offer people the ability to opt-in to the new Gmail design. At the latest, this option becomes enabled in August.
Until September every user will be switched to the new Gmail design. There will also be an option to opt-out available but it will remain like that just for one more month.
The old Gmail design goes away in October
After that, sometime in October, this options will disappear and the G Suite accounts will be required to use the new design, like it or not.
Google is basically giving G Suite administrators a few months of warning so that they have enough time to prepare themselves and their users as well for the upcoming change.
Some users also expect that Google starts migrating free users over to the new design in the coming months as well.
The company has not announced anything more for the moment, but it’s sure that at least one group of users will have to say goodbye to the old design in about four months from now.