Google is giving a couple of its major online tools — Docs and Meet — some big upgrades. During the Google I/O 2021 event on May 18, the tech giant announced new features that will allow users to work more seamlessly between Meet and their Docs, Sheets, and Slides in the near future — and it’s a welcome update for Google loyalists. All of Google's Meet and Doc updates, including captions and translations, will launch sometime in 2021, so you can expect to try out these new features in the near future.
On the first day of Google’s annual developer conference, the tech giant wowed the crowd with some big announcements. While you can’t see them all just yet, they all sound like they’re worth the wait. From emoji reactions in Google Docs (!!!) to live caption translations and enhanced Zoom-esque tools for Google Meet, here are the most exciting features you can look forward to.
Google Doc Features & Templates
In the coming months, you’ll see Google Doc emoji reactions. You’ll be able to add them with an emoji button that inserts reactions, like clapping hands or fire symbols, directly underneath a word or sentence, you know, when words just won’t cut it. Google will also add an assisted writing feature feature that suggests more inclusive language (read: mail carrier vs. mailman) as you type. Docs will also be getting a visual ~makeover~ with the ability to get rid of page boundaries to more easily fit a document to your screen.
Google users can expect Docs to get topic-voting tables, smart chips for recommended content and meetings, checklists, and other functionality updates as early as in the next few days.
Google Meet Workspace Updates
Google is also making it easier to work directly from your Doc, Sheet, or Slide during a Google Meet call with a Zoom-inspired update. Thanks to a new syncing tool, Google plans to bring Meet to the sidebars of your Docs, Sheets, and Slides sometime in the fall of 2021, so you can see and speak to other content collaborators while you’re actively working on your projects.
Captions & Translations
Google Meet is also putting its own spin on one of Zoom’s most popular features with a captions update. If you have a Zoom Pro account, you can take advantage of simultaneous interpretation and closed captioning. While Google Meet currently offers live captions in five different languages, it’ll be rolling out translations of captions later this year. The company will start with translating English live captions into either Spanish, Portuguese, French, or German, but more languages are expected to follow suit in the future.
These new features are just the tip of the iceberg. Basically, the way you use a lot of your Google tools is getting a complete overhaul. For a full list of upgrades coming to Meet, Docs, and Sheets this year, check out Google’s blog post.