Google presented a few months ago Smart Canvas, a vast initiative aimed at improving your productivity, especially remotely. Here are the main new features.
google showcased and rolled out a number of productivity features during its Google I/O conference in May 2021 with its Android 12 operating system and various updates. The Mountain View company integrates all these functions, which aim to facilitate hybrid work, under the name Smart Canvas.
These updates, features and tools aim to further improve popular apps Docs, Sheets and Slides, according to a post on Google’s blog. These should also make it easier to stay connected and focused and, more generally, to work more efficiently with Google Workspace – especially now that more and more teams are working remotely because of the Covid-19 pandemic -.
Here is a small overview of what Google has integrated into its Workspace tools with Smart Canvas and how to use these new features.
Smart chips to identify people, files, events and meetings
Google’s Smart Canvases update enables smart bullets, an extension of existing mention functionality in Google Docs. Now if you type “@” you will not only be able to identify other users, but add specific links to files, events and meetings. The feature is also available in Google Sheets.
Smart chips also allow for creating lists on web and mobile as well as assigning tasks to others. These assigned tasks will appear in the person’s To Do List in Google Tasks.
Plus, Smart Bullets include 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.
Make pages disappear in Docs
Unless you only write in Notes, you’re most likely familiar with page breaks in software like Google Docs. With Smart Canvas, you can make them disappear. Thus, the last words of a sentence or diagrams or images will not pass to the next page. If you want to print or convert to PDF, you can enable page breaks, according to Google.
Timeline view in Sheets
Sheets offers a new timeline view to more easily follow the progress of tasks. In this view, you can organize information by owner, category, and other.
Integrate Docs, Sheets and Slides into Google Meet
You can present content to others in a Google Meet call from Docs, Sheets, or Slides with minimal interruption. That being said, you have to use Google Chrome to enjoy it.
Google Meet also offers live captioning in five languages, and live translation is still in beta. The first translations will be from English into Spanish, Portuguese, French and German. Others will arrive soon.
Google is also adding collaboration tools to Google Chat, to make it easier to create and edit during meetings. It’s available for Docs, Sheets and Slides. Google even adds emoji reactions to Docs.
Writing help features
Smart Canva also has writing assistance features in Docs on the web. A bit like Grammarly. In addition to style suggestions, this feature can advise you on your word choices. A similar helper feature will be coming to Slides to help you better organize your data.