Google Workspace apps will look different going forward

Google Drive is getting some handy features to make finding files in cluttered clouds a little easier.
GIF: Google

Google Workspace apps are undergoing yet another facelift, though this time the Alphabet-owned company is focusing on trying to “collapse the boundaries” between its various apps.

On Thursday, Google shared how it’s redesigning its Workspace apps, including Drive, Docs, Sheets, and Slides, with a similar look to the streamlined Material Design 3 user interface the company uses. It was integrated into Gmail last year. These updates should roll out to Workspace apps in the next few weeks.

in blog post, Director of Google Workspace Product Management Vishnu Sivaji showed how Google Drive users will now be able to more easily access different types of documents through the drop-down menu at the top of each page. Users will also see a built-in action bar for sharing, downloading, or editing a document when they hover over a file.

In Google Docs, Slides, and Sheets, everything from the top toolbar to comments and the Share button are now more rounded and shaded, to make them stand out from the white pane on the rest of the page. Features such as the companion bar and ruler will also be hidden by default. This is in an effort to “simplify” the design, according to Sivagi.

Google is also adding a few other features to its word and spreadsheet programs, such as emoji-style voting on comments and easy data extraction from files. Users can also add custom forms, such as a simplified table that can be used in Docs, which can be accessed by typing the “@” symbol and selecting it from a dropdown menu.

Meanwhile, Sheets now has access to Google Links that can be easily previewed right from your spreadsheets. If the user enters another workspace document such as a document or a slideshow, users will have access to the Data Extraction capability, which allows them to view metadata such as the original owner, last modified date, and URL. The company is also adding date abbreviations like “today” or “yestday” so users don’t have to manually type in each date. The company is working on integrating more browser capabilities into Sheets, including stock tickers. If the user puts the ‘@’ symbol followed by a company name, it should allow them to add a stock ticker that updates directly to a spreadsheet.

All of this comes with a handful of third-party integrations, including smart chip capabilities in Docs for Companies like Asana, Figma, Tableau, and ZenDesk. You can see what this integration looks like in the following GIF.

Last week, Sivaji also talked about how Google works Is join the likes of microsoft at to merge Machine learning AI summaries in docs. This is a much quieter plan than the full Microsoft approach Push AI into Word or PowerPoint. However, it does indicate where things could eventually go, if one day Google decides that AI can be accurate or sane enough to write content for its users.

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