Google's productivity Apps for Work, now called "G Suite," just got smarter and better with a host of intelligent features and updates across the board.
The newly rebranded G Suite includes Gmail, Calendar, Drive, Docs, Sheets, Slides and more, all designed to improve productivity and facilitate collaboration. With smart new capabilities, Google now wants to position its G Suite to better compete against Microsoft's Office 365 productivity suite.
"[W]e believe that when organizations break down silos, connect people and empower them to work together, we get the speed, agility and impact needed to compete in today's market," Google notes in a company blog post introducing the new G Suite.
"With G Suite, information can flow freely between devices, apps, people and teams, so great ideas never get left in the margins again."
What's New With G Suite?
Beside the name change, G Suite also introduces some cool new feature for its apps. Docs, Sheets and Slides, for instance, now rock a new "Explore" feature that taps natural language search to help users organize data, do research, design better presentations and more.
An Explore button in each of the main apps now brings up a cool sidebar with contextual options that vary depending on the app you're using.
If you're using Google Docs, for instance, such contextual options include having the Explore feature search and suggest images, links or Drive documents that seem relevant to what you're writing about.
If you're using Sheets, Explore will enable users to trade formulas for words to analyze their spreadsheet data. This means that natural queries such as "what are the top items by X criteria" will generate the formula and deliver the insights without your having to do anything else.
Lastly, if you're using Google Slides, the Explore feature will offer design and layout suggestions that you can easily apply in one click.
The new G Suite Explore for Google Docs, Sheets and Slides is already live on the web, as well as the Android and iOS apps.
Team Drives For Groups
Aside from the Explore feature, Google also added an update to its Calendar app to make it easier to schedule meetings, while Drive is now easier to use by teams thanks to a new feature called Teams Drives.
The new Teams Drives feature enables organizations and enterprises to set up groups that own files within Google Drive, rather than having a single person own each document, spreadsheet or other. This could prove highly useful for companies looking for easier file management even if people come and go from various teams: the documents would stay in place inside Google Drive.
Of course, administrators will be able to control access to the Team Drive. This feature, however, is only launching in private beta for now.
Another private beta application relates to Google Hangouts, as Google wants to make it possible for users to join Hangouts meetings from any device without having to install an application or plugin.
Lastly, Google also added Quick Access in Drive for Android, aiming to help users save time.
Google started sending emails to customers informing of the rebranding, formally introducing G Suite to Google Apps users.
"Over the coming weeks, you'll see our new name and logo appear in familiar places, including the Admin console, Help Center, and on your invoice," the email explains. "G Suite is still the same all-in-one solution that you use every day, with the same powerful tools: Gmail, Docs, Drive, and Calendar."
To get a better idea of the new Google G Suite of productivity apps, check out the video below.