Forget Office 365! Google reveals its new Workspace with improved Gmail, Drive and Meet


Microsoft’s Office 365 subscription service faces some tough competition this week from the team at Google. The US firm has announced the launch of a new service, known as Google Workspace, which they say includes everything you need to get anything done, all in one place.

Google Workspace now features all of the productivity apps that have grown in popularity over the past few years. These include Gmail, Calendar, Drive, Docs, Sheets, Slides, Meet, and many more.

Google says that its new Workspace user experience brings together core tools for communication and collaboration – like chat, email, voice and video calling, and content management – into a single, unified experience.

In the coming weeks, users will see four new icons for Gmail, Drive, Calendar, and Meet.

“This is the end of the ‘office’ as we know it,” said Javier Soltero, Vice President and General Manager of Google Workspace. “From here on out, teams need to thrive without meeting in person, protect their time to focus on the most impactful work, and build human connection in new ways. Google Workspace gives people a familiar, fully integrated user experience that helps everyone succeed in this new reality – whether you’re in an office, working from home, on the frontlines, or engaging with customers.”

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Here’s some of the new feature coming to Workspace.

Linked previews: Available today, linked previews in Docs, Sheets, and Slides allow users to preview the content of a link without leaving the original document, saving time switching between apps and tabs, and allowing more time to get work done.

Smart chips in Docs, Sheets, and Slides: Beginning to roll out today, when you @mention someone in a document, a popup will display details providing context and even suggest actions like sharing the document. By connecting users to relevant content and people right in Docs, Sheets and Slides, Google Workspace helps users get more done from where they already are.

Doc creation in rooms: In the coming weeks, Google Workspace will enable users to dynamically create and collaborate on a document (Docs, Sheets, Slides) within a room in Chat, without ever having to switch tabs or tools. This will reduce complexity and help ensure all team members have visibility into relevant project work.

Meet picture-in-picture across Docs, Sheets and Slides: Back in July, Google announced it’s bringing Meet picture-in-picture to Gmail and Chat, so users can see and hear the people they’re working with while collaborating. In the coming months, Google will roll out Meet picture-in-picture to Docs, Sheets, and Slides, meaning users will get the benefit of those nonverbal cues that come with actually seeing someone’s face when collaborating in real time.

In the coming months Google will also be bringing this new experience to consumers to help them do things like set up a neighbourhood group, manage a family budget, or plan a celebration using integrated tools like Gmail, Chat, Meet, Docs, and Tasks.

The firm also says it is bringing Google Workspace to its education and nonprofit customers in the coming months. Education customers can continue to access our tools via G Suite for Education, which includes Classroom, Assignments, Gmail, Calendar, Drive, Docs, Sheets, Slides, and Meet. G Suite for Nonprofits will continue to be available to eligible organisations through the Google for Nonprofits program.

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