Martin Brinkmann
Jun 4, 2010
Updated • Mar 18, 2015
Gmail, Google

Is it or The answer to this question depends on the country that you are living in and when you have registered a Google Mail account.

Most users who signed up for a Gmail account got the email address in the format which you see most often around the web. Users living in Germany or the United Kingdom however got addresses instead by default unless they registered an account before June 2005 or October 2005 as they were allowed to keep the address in this case.

Why two email addresses? Legal disputes in those two jurisdictions forced Google to change the default email address from to with the rule that an already registered username would not allow the registration of the username and vice verse.

It is also interesting to note that the two Google mail domains are interchangeable. Mails sent to will reach users and vice verse.

The administrative email address for users from those two countries is the address however and not Users from the United Kingdom have seen a recent change as Google announced that it would phase out addresses. New registrations from the UK will now get a email address while old users have the choice to convert their address to

Only users from Germany are left with email addresses while the rest of the world enjoys addresses.

Still, even users from German can use both email addresses when they use the email service.

Update: Google managed to obtain the rights to use Gmail in Germany in 2012. From June 2012 on, all new sign ups from Germany get email addresses just like anyone else.

You may encounter a email address sporadically but that should be an exception rather than a regular occurrence even in the UK or Germany.


Tutorials & Tips

Previous Post: «
Next Post: «


  1. Ashleigh said on November 20, 2020 at 7:58 pm

    I’ve been asked every year by Google to change to Gmail in the UK. I refuse.
    I want the Google at the end.

    If Google want to buy that from me they’re more than welcome.

  2. Viv Smith said on September 24, 2020 at 4:05 pm

    Following your comment previously Gmail and Google mail aren’t interchangeable when they’re part of a login process Number of times I’ve logged in using one only to find I need to use the other
    Is very frustrating 😔

  3. Daniel said on August 1, 2013 at 10:40 am

    There’s a glitch in the system. I live in Australia where I opened my Google account but was in Germany for a few months in 2007 where I accessed it and sent email from it. However, 6 years later my browser still often redirects to when accessing my account. Recently Google Drive stopped letting me sign in as It insists I sign in as I do this and it reverts to German for a second saying “bitte warten” and then I’m automatically re-signed in as “” anyway and the whole process begins again. I had to change my address back to “” from the email account settings page before Drive finally let me sign in again. It’s as Google is somehow stuck and thinks I never left Germany and came back home to Australia

  4. Julepongracz said on April 3, 2013 at 5:40 pm

    I fOrgot my passcode and it says to check my emails to get my new passcode but I can’t check my emails cause I don’t know my passcode

  5. Now join me? said on November 14, 2011 at 5:46 pm

    I like gmail. Nd what’s ur beim

  6. Anonymous said on April 24, 2011 at 3:41 pm

    hallo , how ar u

  7. Brie987 said on June 6, 2010 at 6:18 pm

    Simplify further.

  8. Mike J said on June 6, 2010 at 3:21 pm

    My account was set up in late 2006 in the U.S. & it is a gmail address.Or so I use it.
    This seems to be a distinction without a difference.

    1. Martin said on June 6, 2010 at 3:26 pm

      There was a way to get gmail mail addresses by using proxies or specific sites that allowed this. Still, you can use both and the emails will arrive, no big deal on the end user side.

  9. Enigma said on June 5, 2010 at 12:24 pm

    You can also use “email”+whatever@gmail/ For example normal mail will be can be and it will still get through but can be used as a throw away account.

  10. Chris said on June 5, 2010 at 2:21 am

    Yeah I am based in the UK and setup my gmail back in the days when you had to have an invite.

    Both and works with my email address which is cool.

Leave a Reply

Check the box to consent to your data being stored in line with the guidelines set out in our privacy policy

We love comments and welcome thoughtful and civilized discussion. Rudeness and personal attacks will not be tolerated. Please stay on-topic.
Please note that your comment may not appear immediately after you post it.