Some metaphors or symbols have become so ingrained in our modern psyches that we sometimes start to wonder when they're missing. One such feature, the starring of content to mark them as important or a favorite, has been included in almost all of Google's services save a few. Those exceptions have grown smaller now that Google has brought the feature to Gmail's contacts as well.
The concept is really simple. A starred contact appears in a special category in Gmail's contact list right at the very top. This gives users quick and easy access to their most frequently used email addresses and contact information. It might not always make some sense when using Gmail, especially when composing mails on a desktop computer, since you will most likely start typing out the name or email address of the recipient immediately. But when paired with Android devices, the feature becomes more useful.
Starring contacts in Gmail works seamlessly with your Google contacts stored on your Android device as well. Starred contacts in Gmail will automatically appear under your Favorite contacts on Android. The reverse also works when adding contacts to your Favorites group from an Android device. Starring a contact from the Gmail Android app is quite straightforward. Simply tap on the contact's portrait in the email and then tap the star symbol on the contact sheet that appears.
This is a subtle but convenient feature that tries to further tie together Google's ecosystem. It is arguably a less controversial change compared to last week's Gmail integration with Google+ that allowed sending emails to Google+ contacts.