Tag Archives: docs

New ways to customize tables in Google Docs

What’s changing 

We’re adding several new ways to customize tables in Google Docs. You can now: 

  • Pin a table header row to repeat on each page 
  • Designate that a row should not be split across pages 
  • Quickly add, and arrange columns and rows 
  • Sorting tables to better organize data. 
  • Use a new table sidebar to manage table properties 

See below for more details. 

Who’s impacted 

End users 

Why it matters 

Tables are an important way to display information in a document. These new features give you more ways to present information using tables, making it easier for viewers of the document to quickly see and understand the information. 

Additional details 

Pin a table header row to repeat on each page 

You can pin one or more rows in a table so they repeat on each page that the table appears on. This will make it easier to see column headers for long tables as you navigate a document. 

Pinning a table header row to repeat on each page


Designate that a row should not be split across pages 


You can designate that a table row should not be split across a page break. This ensures important content in tables sticks together and isn't missed on the next page, and provides more control over formatting and layouts. 

Designate that a row should not be split across pages



Quickly add and arrange columns and rows 

You can now easily drag a row or column to a different location. You’ll also notice a new, intuitive button for creating new rows or columns. 


Adding and arranging columns and rows


Sorting tables to better organize data. 

It is now possible to sort the rows of your tables. Any pinned table headers will remain at the top of your table. Additionally, sorting table rows will group by type of content. This will help you to quickly visualize, understand, and organize your data better. 

Use a new table sidebar to manage table properties 


Table properties will now open in the sidebar, allowing you to see edits reflected in your document in real time. This is similar to functionality already available in docs for things such as image editing. 

Using a new table sidebar to manage table properties


Getting started 

  • Admins: There is no admin control for this feature. 
  • End users: Visit the Help Center to learn more about how to Add and Edit Tables 

Rollout pace 

  • Rapid Release domains: Extended rollout (potentially longer than 15 days for feature visibility) starting on December 7, 2021 
  • Scheduled Release domains: Extended rollout (potentially longer than 15 days for feature visibility) starting on December 22, 2021 

Availability 

  • Available to all Google Workspace customers, as well as G Suite Basic and Business customers Available to users with personal Google Accounts 

Resources 

Roadmap 

15 milestones, moments and more for Google Docs’ 15th birthday

In 2005, an easy-to-use, online word processor called Writely launched. A year later, the collaborative writing tool became part of Google, and over time it evolved into Google Docs. Officially launched to the world in 2006, Google Docs is a core part of Google Workspace. It’s also, as of today, 15 years old. But it wasn’t always so obvious how useful — and loved — Docs would become.

Jen Mazzon was part of the original Docs team, or the Google Writely Team as it was then called. “Everyone told us it was crazy to try and give people a way to access their documents from anywhere — not to mention share documents instantly, or collaborate online within their browser,” she wrote in a March 2006 blog post. “But that's exactly what we did.”

As a much-deserved gift to Docs, here are 15 things about Google Docs that we’re celebrating — from important moments to tips and tricks, there’s a lot to love.

  1. In 2010, Docs got its first big update, adding things like the ability to see others editing and writing in shared documents and better importing features.
  2. Internally, the Docs team has breakfast-themed names for the widgets you see when you edit in Docs. For instance, the yellow messages up at the top are called "butter," and the dialogs that pop out from the bottom right corner are called "toasts" because they pop out of a corner just like toast popping out from an upright toaster. The red error message at the top? That's “ketchup.”
  3. When COVID-19 sent students and educators home, we shared ways they could make use of features like offline Docs and real-time commenting to keep learning and collaboration going remotely.
  4. Lizzo and Sad13 used Google Docs to write music together, and they let us in on their creative process.
  5. There was that time when none other than the Reading Rainbow team designed a book report template for Docs, which you can still use today.
  6. Laura Mae Martin, Google’s Chief Productivity Advisor, always knows the best ways to get the most out of Docs. She shares her tips and tricks regularly on her YouTube channel.
  7. In 2018, the Docs team came up with an Easter egg: Typing #blackhistorymonth into a Doc would trigger Explore in your doc, with information about Black history and the Black community.
Animated GIF of a Google Doc with the words "#blackhistorymonth" on the page. The Explore panel then pops out to surface more information about Black history.

8. Here’s a tip: If you click the “+” icon on the right-hand side panel of the page, you’ll find add-ons — from there, select the hamburger menu (the three lines) and check out Editor’s Choice or Top charts for helpful recommendations.

Screenshot of the right side panel of a Google Doc showing the plus sign icon.

9. Over the years, Docs has became a crucial creative asset for writers of all kinds. Author Viviana Rivero even uses Google Docs to tell stories that people read in real time, as she writes.

10. The Google Workspace team has thought a lot about how to make the most of its tools for hybrid work, including Docs. Learn more in the Google Workspace Guide to Productivity and Wellbeing, which includes tips about how you can make the best use of your time working from home — while also making time for yourself.

11. This past May, the Google Workspace team launched smart canvas — which, among other things, lets you @ mention people in Docs, add checklists and use templates. Soon you’ll also start to see Docs suggesting more inclusive language as you write and edit.

Image showing a screenshot of a Google Doc with an open Doc that says "document review" at the top. A dialog pop up hovers over part of the page with inclusive language suggestions.

12. Thanks to new features like Smart compose and Smart reply — made possible by machine learning and artificial intelligence — Docs has become a stronger collaboration tool for the more than three billion users who rely on Google Workspace.

13. Anyone who’s ever worked on a group Doc knows the upper right-hand corner can sometimes populate with Anonymous Animals — so in 2019, we partnered with the World Wildlife Fund to raise awareness about animals we hope don’t become anonymous.

14. We saw the New York Times share how its staff turned to Google Docs during the pandemic to keep journalists and readers connected. They’ve used Docs to celebrate everyday victories, discover music and recommend movies. As a result of COVID-19 and quarantine, we also saw people use Docs to create virtual escape rooms and organize mutual aid efforts.

15. Over here on the Keyword team, we’re big Docs users: Everything you read on this very blog starts in a Doc — including our weekly newsletter, which we launched last year. And fittingly, this very post.

Happy birthday, Google Docs; we literally couldn’t do it without you.

Create meeting notes in Google Calendar

What’s changing

You can now quickly start and share a meeting notes document for your Calendar events.

GIF of adding Meeting notes in the Calendar details view
Meeting notes in the Calendar details view



Creating a notes document from Calendar will automatically populate the document with the event information and attach the document to the event.

You can also add this same meeting notes template into any doc by typing “@” in the doc and using the drop-down menu.

Add a meeting notes into a Doc using the @ menu
Add a meeting notes template into a Doc




These features are currently only available in Calendar and Docs on the web.

Who’s impacted

End users

Why you’d use it

Meeting notes are one of the most common use cases in Docs, and an effective way to make meetings a good use of time. However, creating, sharing and finding them later involves several basic repetitive steps, and involves switching between Docs and Calendar. The meeting notes feature is a shortcut to create such documents with some quick clicks.

This feature streamlines the creation, sharing and attachment of meeting notes into Calendar events.

Additional details

In Calendar, this feature is only available to meeting organizers or guests with permissions to modify the event.

You can use this feature several ways:
  • While creating or editing an event, you’ll see a “Create meeting notes” button next to the attachment section. You can click this button to create a new document, which attaches it to the event upon saving the changes.
  • Clicking the “Take meeting notes” button in a scheduled event will create this document, and immediately open it in a new tab so users can get started capturing notes right away. In the background, this document will also be attached to the calendar event for future reference.

Once you make these meeting notes, we’ll automatically link back to the Calendar event from the doc, making it easy to navigate between places.

You’ll still be able to attach additional documents to the Calendar event.

Sharing the meeting notes 
  • If you click to “Create meeting notes” when creating a new event or editing an existing event, the notes doc will be shared with the attendees, including those outside your organization, once you hit “Save.”
  • If you click “Take meeting notes” on a scheduled Calendar event, attendees will not automatically have access and we’ll show you a prompt to share in Docs.
  • When capturing meeting notes for scheduled events from Google Docs:
    • If you’re the meeting organizer: A pop-up prompts you to share and attach the document to your event. To give access, click Share & attach.
    • If you’re not the meeting organizer: A pop-up prompts you to share the document. To give access, click Share. The document doesn't attach to the event.

Getting started

  • Admins: There is no admin control for this feature.
  • End users: There is no end user setting for this feature. Visit the Help Center to learn more about meeting notes in Calendar.

Rollout pace

Availability

  • Available to all Google Workspace customers, as well as G Suite Basic and Business customers

Resources

Google Workspace Updates Weekly Recap – September 21, 2021

New updates 


New look and feel for Workspace Updates email subscriptions 
Starting September 29, we're going to be improving the look and feel of the emails you receive when you subscribe to Workspace Updates. 
  • The emails themselves will be sent from [email protected], so be sure to update any inbox filters or labels you may have and check your spam folders if you don't immediately see them. 
  • Emails for the Workspace Updates Blog in non-English markets will update to this new format in the coming weeks. 
  • If you have any feedback about these emails after September 29th, please feel back to let us know in the linked form
Full rollout (1-3 days for availability). | Available to all Google Workspace customers and users with personal Google Accounts. | Workspace Updates Blog Email Subscription Feedback



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.

Upgrade to the newest version of the Google Chat app
We’ve recently released a new version of this app. Users who are still on the older Chat PWA version and will see an in-app banner nudging them to upgrade by visiting chat.google.com. | Learn more.



Improved visibility in Google Meet on web
Google Meet on the web now automatically detects when a user appears underexposed and enhances the brightness to improve their visibility. | Learn more.



Control the ability to present to Google Meet from Google Docs, Sheets, and Slides with a new Admin setting
Admins can turn the ability to present from Google Docs, Sheets, and Slides directly to Google Meet on or off for their organization with a new setting. | Learn more.



One-click recommended actions in the Alert Center
In the Alert Center, Admins will see new one-click recommended actions for various alerts, which they can implement without leaving the Alert Center. | Available to Google Workspace Enterprise Plus, Education Standard, and Education Plus customers. | Learn more.



Improved Search In Gmail on Android
You can now quickly and easily filter email and search results on Android mobile devices to find the one specific email or information you’re looking for with new search filters. | Learn more.



New graphs for metrics over time in Meet Quality Tool
We’ve added detailed metrics over time for endpoints in Meet Quality Tool, which will help admins perform more advanced troubleshooting. | Learn more.



Perform refined email searches with new rich filters in Gmail on web
When searching in Gmail on web, enhanced search chips will provide richer drop-down lists with more options that help you apply additional filters. | Learn more.



Easily chat with meeting participants from a Google Calendar event
Within the Calendar event on web or mobile, you’ll see a Chat icon next to the guest list — simply select this icon to create a group chat containing all event participants. | Learn more.



Ability to mute all Google Meet participants at once rolling out to mobile platforms
Earlier this year, we announced the ability for meeting hosts to mute everyone all at once in Google Meet on desktops/laptop devices. This feature has begun rolling out to iOS devices, with Android availability coming later this year. | Learn more.



For a recap of announcements in the past six months, check out What’s new in Google Workspace (recent releases).

Forms settings are now easier to navigate

 

Quick launch summary 
Now you can easily customize your form or quiz settings with a more visible settings tab and an improved settings layout. 


You’ll see an improved settings menu in the settings tab.

You’ll see an improved settings menu in the settings tab.


Getting started 
  • Admins: There is no admin control for this feature. 
  • End users: There is no end user control for this feature.

Rollout pace 
Availability 
  • Available to all Google Workspace customers, as well as G Suite Basic and Business customers. Available to users with personal Google Accounts 
 Roadmap 

Easily make all files types available offline in Google Drive

What’s changing 
Google Drive stores your most important files, whether they are Google Docs, Sheets, Slides, PDFs, images or the hundreds of other file types we support today. Today, we are announcing more ways to make sure you can make them all accessible to you even when your internet connection is unavailable. 

In 2019, we launched a beta which enabled you to mark non-Google file types, like PDFs, images and Microsoft Office files, available offline when using Google Drive on the web. Now, we’re making this functionality generally available. When you mark these files available offline, you can easily open these files from your browser even when you aren’t connected to the internet.

Easily find files offline


 

ChromeOS users can now also use the easily accessible Files app on their Chromebook to select Google Docs, Sheets, and Slides files to be available when offline. This streamlined access eliminates the need to open Google Drive or Google Docs to select files to make them available offline. 

Find files offline
 

Who’s impacted 
Admins and end users 
 
Why you’d use it 
Users can access all of their important Drive files while offline such as when they’re traveling or when there’s poor internet connectivity. 

Additional details 
Non-Google files such as PDFs, images and Microsoft Office files will need to be opened using apps installed on your computer through Google Drive Web when offline. This feature is already available for Google Drive for desktop users. 

Getting started 

Rollout pace 
Availability 
  • Available to all Google Workspace customers, as well as Cloud Identity Free, Cloud Identity Premium, G Suite Basic and Business customers. Available on personal accounts as well. 

Resources 

Roadmap 

Easily make all files types available offline in Google Drive

What’s changing 
Google Drive stores your most important files, whether they are Google Docs, Sheets, Slides, PDFs, images or the hundreds of other file types we support today. Today, we are announcing more ways to make sure you can make them all accessible to you even when your internet connection is unavailable. 

In 2019, we launched a beta which enabled you to mark non-Google file types, like PDFs, images and Microsoft Office files, available offline when using Google Drive on the web. Now, we’re making this functionality generally available. When you mark these files available offline, you can easily open these files from your browser even when you aren’t connected to the internet.

Easily find files offline


 

ChromeOS users can now also use the easily accessible Files app on their Chromebook to select Google Docs, Sheets, and Slides files to be available when offline. This streamlined access eliminates the need to open Google Drive or Google Docs to select files to make them available offline. 

Find files offline
 

Who’s impacted 
Admins and end users 
 
Why you’d use it 
Users can access all of their important Drive files while offline such as when they’re traveling or when there’s poor internet connectivity. 

Additional details 
Non-Google files such as PDFs, images and Microsoft Office files will need to be opened using apps installed on your computer through Google Drive Web when offline. This feature is already available for Google Drive for desktop users. 

Getting started 

Rollout pace 
Availability 
  • Available to all Google Workspace customers, as well as Cloud Identity Free, Cloud Identity Premium, G Suite Basic and Business customers. Available on personal accounts as well. 

Resources 

Roadmap 

Save time replying to comments in Google Docs with Smart Reply

Quick launch summary


In 2017, we introduced Smart Reply in Gmail to save you time by suggesting quick responses to your messages. Now, Smart Reply in Google Docs saves you time replying to comments in Docs by suggesting relevant replies. 

Smart Reply suggestions appear below the reply box on comment threads in English. You can choose a suggested reply or write your own. Smart Reply joins Smart compose and spelling autocorrect announced in January 2021 to help you compose comments in Docs quickly and with confidence. 

Smart reply suggests replies to comments in Google Docs
Smart Reply can help saves you time replying to comments in Docs by suggesting relevant replies


Getting started 

  • Admins: There is no admin control for this feature. 
  • End users: This feature will be ON by default To turn it off, go to Tools > Preferences > Show Smart Reply suggestions. If turned on, click on a comment thread in Google Docs, and Smart Reply will suggest responses if available. It may not present suggestions in all cases, and the comment thread must be in English. Simply click on a suggestion to use it, once you click, you can send it as-is or edit it before sending. Visit the Help Center to learn more about using Smart Reply in Google Docs, and replying to comments in Google Docs

Rollout pace 

Availability 

  • Available to all Google Workspace customers, as well as G Suite Basic and Business customers. Also available to users with personal Google Accounts 

Resources 


Google Workspace Updates Weekly Recap – July 23, 2021

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 and G Suite customers.

Gmail now displays the latest emojis
Now you can see all the latest emojis in Gmail, with emojis now rendered in the latest Unicode standard 13.1.

Improved Tabular Data Handling for Gmail DLP
We are improving the way we handle Tabular data files like .csv or .xlsx to best account for the structure of these files. This will result in more accurate content scans. | Available to Google Workspace Enterprise, Education Fundamentals, Standard, Teaching and Learning Upgrade, and Plus customers. | Learn more.


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.

Updates to Google Workspace Public Status Dashboard and service status alerts
We're introducing a new Public Status Dashboard experience for Google Workspace. As part of this update, we’re enhancing the functionality of the existing Apps outage alert system-defined rule, which provides email notifications regarding service disruptions or outages via the Public Status Dashboard. | Learn more.


Hangouts to Google Chat upgrade beginning August 16th, with option to opt-out
Beginning August 16, 2021, we will start upgrading users who have the “Chat and classic Hangouts” setting selected to “Chat preferred,” unless you explicitly opt out. Additionally, the “Chat and classic Hangouts'' setting will also be removed for all users in your domain unless you opt out of the upgrade. | Learn more.


Fundamental data regions now available to more Google Workspace customers
Data regions give you the ability to choose where covered data for select Google Workspace apps is stored at rest. We’re introducing a more limited version of data regions, known as Fundamental data regions, which will be available to Google Workspace Enterprise Standard, Business Plus, Business Standard and Frontline customers. | Learn more.


Bulk convert Classic Sites to new Sites using the Classic Sites Manager
Beginning today, you can now bulk convert Classic Sites to new Sites using the Classic Sites Manager. | Learn more.


Block shares from another user in Google Drive
We’re adding the ability to block another user in Google Drive. If blocked, the user will not be able to share any Drive items with you, and items owned by the user will not be able to be shared with you or be shown when you’re browsing Google Drive. In addition, your files will not be available to the user you’ve blocked, even if you’ve previously shared items with them.  | Learn more.



Select multiple tabs in Google Sheets and perform basic actions on the selection
Now you can select multiple tabs in Google Sheets and perform basic actions on the selection (such as moving the tabs together, deleting, duplicating, copying, coloring, or hiding). | Learn more.



Image placeholders make it easy to work as a team with images in Slides themes and layouts
Now when you create a theme in Slides, you can add image placeholders to your layouts. | Learn more. 



Easily collaborate and share Slide presentations with side-by-side viewing in Google Chat
In Google Chat, you can now open and edit a Slide presentation in a side-by-side view. | Learn more. 



For a recap of announcements in the past six months, check out What’s new in Google Workspace (recent releases).

Google Workspace Business Starter and Frontline customers can now collaborate with people who are not using a Google account in Drive, Docs, Sheets, Slides, and Sites

Quick launch summary 

We’re making visitor sharing available to Google Workspace Business Starter and Frontline customers, with a limit of five visitor shares per month, per user. 

With visitor sharing, you can share items with non-Google accounts, enabling them to view, comment on, or edit content in Google Drive, Docs, Sheets, Slides, and Sites using a secure pincode. 



Getting started 

  • Admins: 
    • Sharing outside of your organization to users with non-Google accounts will be ON by default if you currently allow users in your organization to send sharing invitations to people outside your organization who are not using a Google account. 
    • Sharing outside of your organization to users with non-Google accounts will be OFF by default if you currently do not allow sharing outside your organization. Use our Help Center to learn more about sharing to non-Google accounts
    • Visitor sharing will be controlled by new settings at Admin console > Apps > G Suite > Drive and Docs > Sharing Settings (pictured below). These settings can be controlled at the domain or OU level. 



Rollout pace 


Availability 

  • Available to Google Workspace Essentials, Business Starter, Business Standard, Business Plus, Enterprise Essentials, Enterprise Standard, Enterprise Plus, Education Fundamentals, Education Plus, Frontline, and Nonprofits, as well as G Suite Business customers 
  • Not available to G Suite Basic, Cloud Identity customers, or users with personal accounts 

Resources