Google Docs Overview Updated January 5, 2021

Google Docs

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160 'Google Docs' stories

May 2011 - January 2021


Google Docs originated from web-based word processor Writely. The app would lay the groundwork for such common features as collaborative text editing. Eventually acquired by Google, it was made available to all Google Apps users in February of 2007.

The marquee feature of Docs is the ability to collaborate with a wide number of people online. Controls help determine who can see, comment, and edit documents. In its current form, Docs is an HTML5 app that runs on most modern browsers and even has support for rudimentary viewing on mobile. Its Android and iOS apps are quite powerful and gives users access to the same web functionality.

On Chrome, Docs works offline and allows users to work without an internet connection and have changes synced backed up to the cloud. An Add-ons feature allows third-party developers to add extra functionality like a thesaurus and a bibliography creator.

Google Docs Stories January 5

Google Docs adds Smart Compose, autocorrect to comments

Since Smart Compose launched in Gmail at I/O 2018, the machine learning feature has expanded to more users and other products. In Google Docs, the helpful tool, along with autocorrect, is now available when commenting.

Google Docs Stories December 10, 2020

Google is rolling out new features across Docs and other Workspace apps to increase interoperability with Word and the Microsoft Office suite. It comes as some teams might choose to use both sets of tools, while others still work with partners that don’t use cloud offerings.

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Google Docs Stories November 30, 2020

Google Docs improves importing PDFs with images, tables, and advanced formatting

Opening a PDF uploaded to Google Drive provides a basic preview. You’ve long been able to edit PDF files by selecting the “Open with Google Docs” option, and the import experience is now offering improved support.

Google Docs Stories November 24, 2020

Google Docs, Sheets, and Slides for iOS add Microsoft Office editing

Following the web last year and Android in September, Google Docs, Sheets, and Slides for iOS can now edit Office files. 

Google Docs Stories November 11, 2020

In addition to Photos ending unlimited free backup, Google is making a change to how Docs, Sheets, Slides, and other similar files are stored. The company also announced new auto-delete polices for inactive and full accounts.

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Google Docs Stories October 28, 2020

Have you received an email about a new comment in a Google Docs or other Google Workspace file you don’t recognize? Do not click the included link, as it’s likely part of a new source of spam emails that are abusing comments in Google Docs, Sheets, and Slides.

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