I didn't notice this small corner before, but it is small, so I have no idea when it started. It resembles the corner of a piece of paper when we fold it.

This is a screenshot of how it looks like:


Removing the other code, the corner appears like this:


The remaining code is an iframe, with this code (ellipses indicate more code):

<iframe src="https://hangouts.google.com/webchat/load?prop=gmail(...)" (...) id="gtn-roster-iframe-id"></iframe>

Since Hangouts are mentioned, and I'm still using the old chat in this account, I decided to check my second account, in which I have Hangouts enabled:


Does anyone know why this happens? Does it have any purpose? Will it ever change, after some action? Is the page tearing, because of how old the chat is?!

Additional info: I am using Firefox in Mac, and this happens even in Private Browsing. I tried with Safari, and the same corner appears in Private Browsing as well. Using Safari's User Agent "Switcher", the behaviour is the same in every available browser (also in Private Browsing). I don't have extensions or plug-ins in any of the browsers. I also installed Chrome, and the same happened even in Incognito Mode.

Update: The linked page now states that

Google Chat was officially shut down on June 26, 2017.

I was now forced to Hangouts, which made the "corner" disappear.

  • 3
    I can confirm you that under Linux/Firefox/hangsout enabled I cannot see that corner. I cannot find even with CTRL-SHIFT-C (the inspector). Try to see the (whole) code of the page in which you find it. Maybe there is some commented code from which you can guess something.
    – Hastur
    Commented Feb 26, 2016 at 13:20
  • @Hastur I don't see it neither, when accessing through my Hangouts-enabled account. I don't find anything with the same id (gtn-roster-iframe-id) in the source of that account. But the first account, it appears under the main <body> tag, with that id, and with the source that I mentioned in the post. The #document header has many scripts, and then <base href="https://hangouts.google.com/webchat/u/0/"> in the end, which by itself returns a 404. Its body also contains several references to "hangouts".
    – bandrade
    Commented Feb 26, 2016 at 13:35
  • I don't see the "small corner icon" on an account with the old chat in a Chromebook. Try in incognito mode with all the extensions disabled and share with us if the icon is still there. Commented Feb 28, 2016 at 0:12
  • I cannot see the icon on the upper left corner of Gmail using Firefox on OSX. I tried also to search for it through the source code.
    – Vasikos
    Commented Feb 29, 2016 at 10:34
  • @VasilisKosmas But do you know if you have Hangouts enabled? Because if you have, that appears to be the expected behaviour.
    – bandrade
    Commented Feb 29, 2016 at 10:45

1 Answer 1


It seems to be a not-very-well-hidden iframe for the old-style Gmail chat. Considering how old the old Gmail chat is, and that you're not seeing it with the more modern (but now still possibly outdated) Hangouts, it just seems like a bit of forgotten code that wasn't as well-crafted as the usual Google code we see.

I don't think it is anything special.

  • I guess we'll never for sure... For now, this seems to be the best answer
    – bandrade
    Commented Oct 10, 2017 at 16:18

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