Google Adds Smart Canvas Tool to Google Workspace

A better way to work in Docs, Sheets, and Slides

Google announced a new experience in Google Workplace called Smart Canvas during the Google I/O Keynote on Tuesday. 

Smart Canvas is a collaboration tool within Google Workspace with various new features that Google said will roll out throughout the rest of this year. Javier Soltero, the general manager and vice president of Google Workspace, said during Google I/O that Smart Canvas would "bring the voices and faces of your team directly into the collaboration experience." 

Smart Canvas logo


"As smart canvas drives the next era of collaboration in Google Workspace, we remain committed to providing a solution that’s flexible, helpful, and that fuels innovation for organizations in every industry," Google wrote in its blog post announcing the feature. "On the frontlines, in corporate offices and across the countless workspaces in between, Google Workspace will continue to transform how work gets done."

The Smart Canvas features will work across Google Docs, Sheets, and Slides. Some of the Smart Canvas features include inclusive language suggestions (like an assisted writing feature that suggests chairperson over chairman for less gendered wording); the ability to present the Google doc, sheet, or slide you’re working on directly into a Google Meet call; live captions in five languages in Google Meet; connected checklists; emoji reactions; and more. 

Smart Canvas also utilizes smart chips that use the @ symbol to see a list of recommended people, files, and meetings. The feature will allow collaborators to skim associated meetings or people without changing tabs or contexts. Google said the feature would be available in Sheets in the coming months.

Google I/O takes place Tuesday, May 18 through Thursday, May 20, with programs and presentations daily. See all our coverage of Google I/O 2021 here.

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