Google wants to help you work more efficiently with these 6 features


Google is hoping that these features will help people continue to work outside of the office as well.

James Martin / CNET

Google rolled out a list of productivity features to Google I / O developer conference in May 2021 alongside the new Android 12 operating system, camera and WearOS updates. Google will host its new productivity features, which aim to connect hybrid workplaces, under the name Smart canvas.


Brett Pearce / CNET

These updates, features and tools are intended to improve frequently used apps like Docs, Sheets and Slides, according to a Google blog post. It should also make it possible to stay connected, focused and work efficiently with Google Workspace, especially now that so many teams are spread across the world in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Here’s a look at how Google has improved their workspace tools with Smart Canvas and how to use the new features.

Smart bullets for tagging people, files, events, and meetings

Google’s Smart Canvas update lets you use smart bullets, which extend over the existing “@ mention” functionality of Google Docs. Now, if you type “@”, you will not only be able to tag other users, but also add specialized links for files, events and meetings. This feature is also available in Google Sheets.


When you type @mention in Docs, you will be able to tag more than your colleagues.

Screenshot by CNET

Smart bullets will also let you create checklists on the web and mobile, as well as assign tasks to others. Assigned tasks will appear in the assignee’s task list in Google Tasks.

Plus, smart bullets include table templates in Docs to better track comments, drafts, and more. There is also a template for capturing meeting notes and importing information from calendar invitations.

Documents in pageless format

Unless you’re only typing in Note apps, you’re probably familiar with page breaks in programs like Google Docs. With Smart Canvas, you can get rid of page breaks, so that the last words of a sentence or graphic are not split. If you want to print or convert to PDF, you can re-enable page breaks, according to Google. Allowing you to remove page breaks can make the writing process smoother.

Timeline view in Sheets

Sheets has a new Timeline view for easier and faster task tracking. In the Timeline view, you will be able to organize your information by owner, category and more.

Integration of Docs, Sheets and Slides in Google Meet

You can present content to others during a Google Meet call from Docs, Sheets, or Slides with minimal disruption. However, you must be using Google Chrome for this feature to work.

Google Meet also offers subtitles in five languages ​​and the live translation feature is in beta. Translations will start with English translated into Spanish, Portuguese, French and German, and more languages ​​will be added later.


Smart Canvas better integrates collaboration and communication tools.

Screenshot by CNET

Google chat

Google is also adding collaboration tools to Google Chat, making it easier to create and edit work in meetings. It is available for Docs, Sheets, and Slides. Google also added emoji reactions to Docs.

Assisted writing features

Smart Canvas also includes assisted writing features in Docs on the web that will work much like Grammarly. In addition to stylistic suggestions that can help with editing, the writing assist feature can warn of offensive language or word choices. Similar assisted analysis functionality will come to Slides to help you better collect information about the data.

For more information, see everything we didn’t get at Google I / O 2021 and how to download Android 12 and who can use it.

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