2016 was an exciting year for G Suite! Whether it was improving existing features with machine intelligence or rolling out new products entirely, there were lots of updates that are helping us work faster and more efficiently now. Here’s a roundup of our favorite updates from 2016.

1.) The “Explore” function in Docs, Sheets, & Slides

This is an excerpt from our post Google Sheets, Docs, & Slides Just Got Much, Much Smarter.

This year, Google added machine intelligence to the “Explore” function within Google Sheets, Docs, and Slides. And yeah… they’re pretty brilliant now. You can ask Google Sheets questions about your data and get answers. Google Docs can automatically recommend related research. Google Slides can suggest layouts and then automatically reformat your slides for you.

2.) Action items in Docs, Sheets, & Slides

This is an excerpt from our post Now You Can Assign Action Items in Google Docs, Sheets, & Slides.

The power of collaboration is amazing. But sometimes, when you’re working with other people on projects, ownership can get muddled. It’s hard to know (or remember) who’s responsible for what task. Now you can easily create and assign action items in G Suite. You can assign action items manually, or let Google automatically detect them for you (Docs only).

3.) Intelligent predictions from Google Forms

This is an excerpt from our post Google Forms Can Now Predict Question Types and Suggest Answers.

Google can now intelligently predict what kind of question you’re asking in Forms, and also suggest potential responses. This is a fantastic time-saver. According to Google, this new update uses neural networks to predict questions and answers, and it gives you back 25% of the time you used to spend creating a Form.

4.) Search like you talk

This is an excerpt from our post To Find Files in Google Drive, Search Like You Talk.

Google recently incorporated Natural Language Processing (NLP) into the search process in Drive, which is an intricate way of saying “search like you talk.” So now you can enter phrases like, “Show me spreadsheets from Scott,” or “Find my presentations from last June” to find your files.

5.) Goals in Google Calendar

This is an excerpt from our post How to Use Goals in Google Calendar.

In April, Google rolled out Goals in Google Calendar. We all have different types of goals that are important to us, like getting healthier or building a new skill. Finding the time to work toward those goals can be very difficult with all of the work, social, family, and other obligations that most of us have in our lives. Google has recognized that difficulty, and there’s a solution inside of its calendar app to help make achieving your goals a little easier.

6.) Columns in Google Docs (no more workarounds)

This is an excerpt from our post Create & Customize Columns in Google Docs (No More Workarounds Needed).

Gone are the days of having to use creative workarounds to create columns in Google Docs. Luckily, Google released a built-in column feature in Docs this year, making the process so much easier.

7.) Deduplication in Drive

This is an excerpt from our post This New Deduplication Feature in Google Drive Helps Keep Your Files Organized.

Previously, when you uploaded different versions of the same file to Google Drive, you’d end up with duplicate file names like this: File (1), File (2), and so forth, making your files messy and hard to search through. Google introduced a deduplication feature designed to combat this exact problem. Now, if you upload a file that matches the name of an existing file, Drive will add it as a new version, instead of creating a duplicate.

8.) The Google Drive + Slack integration

This is an excerpt from our post Get Things Done Faster Using Google’s Integration with Slack.

Be prepared to take your productivity to the next level. Google’s recent integration with Slack means that now you can share and create Drive files directly in Slack. With this new product integration that Google has cooked up with Slack, you don’t have to waste time jumping between windows and programs trying to accomplish a simple task.

9.) A better, faster Gmail iOS app

This is an excerpt from our post Exciting Features You’ll Love in the New Gmail iOS App.

Out with the old, in with the new! The Gmail app for iOS has undergone a makeover, and it’s the biggest overhaul of the app in almost four years. Now you can undo send, search better and faster, and swipe to archive or delete emails.

10.) Google Trips

This is an excerpt from our post Planning a Vacation? Try the New Google Trips App.

Hey jetsetters: Whether your next trip is a weekend jaunt or a 3-week international adventure, Google Trips is a new mobile app designed to help you plan the best trips of your life. Here’s how it works.

11.) Google Spaces

This is an excerpt from our post An Introduction to Google Spaces.

Google announced a new app this year: Google Spaces. The idea behind Spaces is to create topic-based, shareable spaces that allow you to make a space about anything that interests you and then share it with your friends. Here’s a quick tour.

 

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