Google updates Docs, Sheets and Slides with new collaboration features

G Suite, Google’s set of online productivity tools, is getting a major update today that adds a number of new features to Google Docs, Sheets and Slides. Most of these updates focus around collaboration, but the service is also getting support for Google Cloud Search and the company is adding new templates and add-ons from partners like LegalZoom, DocuSign, LucidChart and others.

Back in the dark ages, people used to share documents by email and to make sure that everybody was on the same page, they’d change the file’s name for different versions of their Word or Excel documents. For the most part, that’s not really needed anymore, but with this update, Google Docs Sheets and Slides now lets you track changes by saving multiple versions of a document with different names. To be fair, this may be useful whenever you want to save a canonical version of a document, though I’m not sure this was near the top of most-requested G Suite features.

The new integration with Google Cloud Search in Docs and Slides means that G Suite Business and Enterprise users will now be able to quickly find the right information from their internal documents without having to leave the editor. Previously, you had to specifically go to Cloud Search to look for documents, but you can now kick off searches directly from inside Docs and Slides.

Also new in this version is the ability to see a clean version of a file in Docs without any comment or edits, but if you want to make quick work of all of your editors’ suggestions, you can now accept or reject all of them with just one click. In addition, you can also now more easily compare documents in Docs with the help of the new Litera Change-Pro and Workshare add-ons for Docs.

For mobile users, this update also brings the ability to suggest changes on Android and iOS, something that was sorely missing in earlier versions.