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Google Workspace EDU Updates – 10/6/21

There are always some great updates coming down the pike from Google! We won’t be detailing ever single one but we will give you some new updates that are applicable to the every day user on the EDU edition here at Meredith.

To get all the updates, head over to the Google Workspace Updates blog page. You can also find a Subscribe by Email link in the sidebar to get the updates right to your inbox.

July to October 10, 2021

Calendar – Indicate whether you are attending virtually or in person. Choose Yes, No, or Maybe in response to a Calendar invitation but now the Yes option also allows you to specify if you are joining virtually or in person. Learn more here.

google calendar virtual or in person

Calendar – Share work location and hours. You may get a popup to add your work location and time but it is always available in Settings under the Working Hours & Location option in the sidebar. Learn more here.

google calendar work location indicators

Calendar – See time insights compiled from Calendar events. See time breakdown, people you spent the most time with, and average time in meetings. Learn more here.

Calendar – Start a chat with meeting participants. A button now appears in the calendar event details to easily start a chat with participants. Learn more here.

Chat – Add GIFs to your chat. Easily add GIFs to chat. The chat window needs to be maximized to see the GIF button. Learn more here.

google chat gif button

Slides and Sheets – Smart compose now available for comments. When typing comments, Google will fill in suggested sentence endings. Learn more here.

Drive – Block shares from another user. Block users who are spam sharing with you. You will not be able to see their files and they will not be able to see yours. This will not work for anyone within Meredith campus organization. Learn more here.

Sheets – Select and perform actions on multiple sheets at once. Use CRTL or SELECT to select multiple tabs and then use the menu to perform actions such as hiding the tabs. Learn more here.

Sheets and Slides – Customize colors. Customize theme color by choosing from the color picker. Learn more here.

Sheets – Formula and function suggestions. As you are typing Sheets will now suggest formulas and functions to use. Learn more here.

Slides – Add image placeholder. Use image placeholders in themes and layouts to share with your team or department. Learn more here.

Slides – “Present” button renamed to “Slideshow”. Learn more here.

Before June 28, 2021

Since we’ve just started with updates, these are some of the new and helpful.

ContactsMore information. (may take until Jul 8th to see this change) Contacts will now have more information to keep in contact with your colleagues. You can now see

  • Their management chain, department, and title, 
  • A history of your Workspace relationship, including email conversations and meetings.

Chat – Replacing Hangouts – If you have used the chatting feature before, that was Hangouts. An updated app named Chat is now out to all customers and will soon completely replace Hangouts.

hangouts to google chat

Docs – Checklists. – Now have a button to add a checklist next to the bulleted list button. When item is checked off, it will have a strike through the text.

google docs checklist button

Docs – @ mentions. Use the @ symbol to tag users, add a date, or add quick links to Docs, Slides, or Sheets. If the tagged user does not already have access to the Doc, you will be prompted to share with them.

Tagged users will have a profile box appear on hover with contact options such as email, message, or video call.

An added date will give you a quick link to book a meeting in the calendar.

google docs at mentions options
google docs at mentions user profile card

Drive – New colored folder options. Color coding folders was previously just for regular Drive folders. You can now add colors to folders in Shared Drives and shortcut folders.

Gmail – Email recipients marked “External”. Any emails with recipients outside the Meredith organization will be marked as “external”. Learn more here.

Meet – Improved hand raising.

  • An updated and improved visual icon and animation on the video tile
  • The tiles of people with raised hands may be moved to be more visible in the video grid
  • An audio notification for all participants when the first raised hand is raised
  • A clickable notification which shows the number of raised hands and which links to an ordered queue of all participants with raised hands
  • That a participant’s hand will be automatically lowered after they speak
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