Delete your Gmail account: The ultimate guide

Nwachukwu Glory Last updated: October 7, 2022 Read time: 14 minutes Disclosure

A Gmail account is critical in today's online experience, but sometimes, you might want to delete it. This article explains how to do it.

Sneek peek at deleting Gmail account

It’s hard to imagine why you would want to delete a Gmail or a Google account. After all, few assets are as important as Google or Gmail accounts in the current global digital environment. However, sometimes, deleting one or both of them becomes necessary for various possible reasons that go from the trivial to the essentials of digital security. Thankfully, the deletion process is painless. And if you find yourself the victim of deleter’s remorse, you can always recover the account if you move quickly.

So you would be better off without a Gmail account, but you want to keep your Google account? Or do you want to get rid of both, maybe? It’s OK. We will show you how to get away with it in both scenarios. First, you need to know that deleting either account follows a different procedure if you do it on a mobile device or a desktop computer. The differences are minimal but not negligible, and you will learn how to do it in both cases.

But why would anyone want to leave their Gmail account behind? That’s something to ponder, especially now that the Android world makes Google identities essential.

Well, there are plenty of reasons. Maybe your username is unfortunate or hard to remember or share with others. Or maybe your current Gmail address is already on every spamming list, and you’re sick and tired of getting junk mail. Or you could have decided that you want an email provider focused on privacy, security, and anonymity better than Gmail.

Whatever your reasons, you will know what you need to do by the time you finish reading this article.

Deleting your Gmail account

Since you’re here, you must be eager to know how to delete a Gmail account permanently. You can quickly achieve this goal by following the steps explained in this section.

The procedure only needs a browser and doesn’t depend on the operating system. So the way to go is the same whether you’re on Windows, macOS, or even Linux. On the other hand, if you want to delete the account from a mobile device, we will also show you how to do it in a different guide section.

So here are the steps you need to follow to deactivate your Gmail account:

  1. Launch your browser, point it toward your Gmail account and log in.
  2. Find your profile image (the icon) in the window’s top right corner and click on it. Pick “Manage your Google Account.”
  3. There, choose “Data and privacy” on the menu you see on the left side.
  4. Next, pick “Delete a Google service” that you see in the “Delete or Download your data” tab.
  5. Now, select “Delete a service,” followed by providing the website with your Google account password (understandably, for verification purposes).
  6. Click on the Trash figure right next to Gmail. But, before you do away with your account, you can pick out “Download data” to keep a copy of your user settings, attachments, and emails on your account.
  7. The remaining Google services you are not deleting will need to be associated with a new email address. Type it in and click on “Send Verification Email.”
  8. Login into that external account to verify it for Google.
  9. Tick the box and then pick “Delete Gmail” at the bottom left of the page.

That’s all. Your Gmail account has now evaporated into digital oblivion!

Deleting a Gmail account using an Android smartphone

Canceling a Gmail account from an Android device is not so different from the procedure outlined above for desktop computers. But the slight differences are essential to get right. Here are the steps to follow:

  1. Open your Android device’s settings and keep scrolling until you find “Google.”
  2. Tap on “Manage your Google account” and then find the “Delete your account or a service” option under “Data and personalization.”
  3. Click on “Delete a service,” followed by clicking on the “Trash bin” you see next to your Gmail account.
  4. Follow the instructions on the screen. That will take you through the remaining process, closely resembling the desktop steps.

Deleting a Gmail account on an iPhone

Here you will find again that deleting a Gmail account from an Apple device is almost the same as deleting it from a desktop computer through your browser. We will show you only the most essential steps. You can do this from the Gmail application or the iPhone browser. The trick is initiating the deletion request and continuing as if you were on a desktop computer.

  1. Launch your Gmail application.
  2. Look for the hamburger menu at the top left of the screen, and scroll down to “Settings.”
  3. Find the account you want to delete and tap on it.
  4. Find “Manage your Google Account” and tap on it.
  5. Pick “Data and personalization” and now “Delete your account or a service,” then “Delete a service.”
  6. Find Gmail and click on the trash bin in your Google services list. Then, go along with the instructions until you finish the process.

Reasons why you might want to delete or deactivate your Gmail account

Gmail and Google accounts are so crucial in the current digital environment that they are almost equivalent to a license to exist. So why would you want to lose the one you have? There could be many valid reasons; let’s think about them.