The new updates, features and tools aim to improve common apps such as Docs, Sheets and Slides, according to a blog post from Google. It should also make it easier to stay connected, focused and work efficiently with Google Workspace – especially with so many teams scattered around the world after the COVID-19 pandemic.
Here’s how Google refreshed its Workspace tools with Smart Canvas and how to use the new features.
Smart chips to tag people, files, events and meetings
Users can now take advantage of smart chips with the Smart Canvas updates. Smart chips streamline a user’s workflow in Google Docs by extending the already available “@ mention” feature. If you now type “@”, you can not only tag other users, but also add specialized links for files, events and meetings. The feature will be available for Google Sheets in the coming months.
With smart chips you can also create checklists on the web and mobile and assign the tasks to others. The assigned tasks appear in the assignee’s task list in Google Tasks.
Plus, smart chips include table templates in Docs to better track feedback, projects, and more. There is also a template for capturing meeting notes and importing information from calendar invitations.
Pageless format Docs
Unless you only type in Note apps, you are probably familiar with page breaks in programs like Google Docs. With Smart Canvas you can remove page breaks so that the last words of a sentence or graphs are not split up. If you want to print or convert to a PDF, you can turn page breaks back on, according to Google. Adding the ability to ignore page breaks can make the writing process smoother.
Timeline view in Sheets
Spreadsheets gets a new timeline view for easier and faster tracking of tasks. In timeline view you can organize your information by owner, category and more.
Integrate documents, spreadsheets and presentations into Google Meet
Smart Canvas has plans to better integrate communication and collaboration tools. Now you can present content to others during a Google Meet call from Docs, Sheets, or Slides with minimal interruption. In the fall, Google said it will bring Meet directly to Docs, Sheets and Slides for simultaneous collaboration and communication.
Google Meet also offers live captions in five languages, but live translations will arrive later this year. Translations start with English translated to Spanish, Portuguese, French and German, and more languages will be added later.
Google also integrates collaboration tools into Google Chat, so you can easily create and edit them during meetings. It is available for Docs and Sheets with support for Slide coming soon. Google also adds emoji reactions to Docs.
Supported writing functions
Smart Canvas also includes supported writing functions in Docs on the Web, which work a bit like Grammar. In addition to stylistic suggestions to aid in editing, the assisted writing feature can warn of offensive language or word choices. A similar assisted analysis feature will come to Slides to help users gather better insights about data.
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