Google Workspace Updates Weekly Recap – June 30, 2023

3 New updates

Unless otherwise indicated, the features below are fully launched or in the process of rolling out (rollouts should take no more than 15 business days to complete), launching to both Rapid and Scheduled Release at the same time (if not, each stage of rollout should take no more than 15 business days to complete), and available to all Google Workspace customers.

Revamping the "First Open Experience" in Sheets and Slides on Android devices 
In addition to the recent announcement that documents on tablet and foldables will now be in paginated mode upon first open, there will now be a more creation-focused experience when first opening the Sheets and Slides apps on Android devices. For example:

In the Sheets app, there will be larger tap targets and tapping once exposes the formula bar, tab bar, and a contextual formatting toolbar. 
Revamping the "First Open Experience" in Sheets
In the Slides app, you will now see the filmstrip on the left-hand side and selecting an object exposes the contextual toolbar and an on-screen keyboard. 
Revamping the "First Open Experience" in Slides on Android devices

Paste HTML into document on Android 
In continuing our mission to provide a top-class user experience on large screen devices, we’re introducing the ability for users to paste copied HTML elements into a document on Android. You can now copy HTML elements to clipboard and paste the elements into a Doc, all while maintaining the formatting elements. 

Easily duplicate groups and objects in Google Sites 
Currently, Google Site editors can duplicate a section of their Site, and the duplicated section appears directly below the section it was duplicated from. Starting this week, we’re extending the duplicate feature by enabling you to easily duplicate objects (images, buttons, text boxes) and groups when editing a Site. | Learn more about adding or editing text & images in Google Sites
Easily duplicate groups and objects in Google Sites

Previous announcements

The announcements below were published on the Workspace Updates blog earlier this week. Please refer to the original blog posts for complete details.

Quickly access more features during meetings, available for Google Meet on the web 
We’ve introduced a new quick action to access popular features in Google Meet. By hovering the mouse on top of your own video feed, you can access video effects such as immersive backgrounds or fun filters to bring more fun to your meetings and a reframing option to improve your visibility. | Learn more about features in Google Meet

Apply background blur when joining a call using a virtual desktop 
If you’re using a virtual desktop infrastructure (VDI) to join a Google Meet meeting, you can now use background blur and light adjustment. Background blur will intelligently separate you from the background, blurring your surroundings while keeping you clear and in focus. | Available to Workspace Business Standard, Business Plus, Enterprise Standard, Enterprise Plus, and Individual customers only. | Learn more about background blur in Google Meet. 

Google Sheets now integrated with mail merge in Gmail 
Mail merge will support Google Sheets in the web version of Gmail. This integration will allow you to link a Sheet with up to 1,500 recipients and use any data column from your Sheet as a mail merge tag. | Available to Google Workspace Business Standard, Business Plus, Enterprise Standard, Enterprise Plus, Education Standard, Education Plus customers and Nonprofits only. | Learn more about mail merge with Sheets in Gmail. 

Simplified access controls coming to Google Meet beginning July 17, 2023 
We’re introducing simplified controls for meeting access in Google Meet. These will replace the existing Quick access meeting settings and the admin setting to turn Quick access on or off by default will be removed. This update will begin rolling out on July 17, 2023. | Learn more about access controls coming to Google Meet

Use polls or Q&As during Google Meet live streams 
If you’re live streaming a video meeting, meeting hosts can now enable the Q&A and poll features, which previously were only offered in traditional Meet meetings. Expanding these features to live streamed meetings will help take your meetings to the next level with a more feature-rich, collaborative experience. | Available to Google Workspace Enterprise Essentials Plus, Enterprise Starter, Enterprise Plus, Enterprise Standard, Education Plus, and the Teaching and Learning upgrade customers. | Learn more about polls and Q&As during Google Meet live streams

Making focus time more productive with new Google Calendar setting 
To increase concentration and bridge the gap between do not disturb and focus time, you can now mute notifications for the duration of your focus time directly in Calendar. | Available to Enterprise Standard, Enterprise Plus, Business Standard, Business Plus, Education Standard, Education Plus, and Nonprofits only. | Learn more about the new Google Calendar setting

See read receipts for messages in Google Chat group direct messages 
We’re introducing read receipts in group direct messages. With this feature, you can now quickly identify if other members of a group have read your latest message within a Chat stream. | Learn more about read receipts in Google Chat.

Improvements for client-side encryption in Gmail 
We’ve introduced two new features for client-side encryption in Gmail which will help you quickly identify ineligible recipients and any attachments that may be blocked. | Available to Google Workspace Enterprise Plus, Education Plus, and Education Standard customers. | Learn more about client-side encryption in Gmail.

Completed rollouts

The features below completed their rollouts to Rapid Release domainsScheduled Release domains, or both. Please refer to the original blog post for additional details.