Wednesday, June 15, 2011 | 10:36 AM
(Cross-posted on the Google Enterprise Blog)
We don’t have to tell you that the workforce is increasingly mobile, and that workers on the go expect to be fully productive on email and calendar from their mobile devices. But we do want to tell you that we have a few new features for Google Sync users that will help employees work efficiently from anywhere on their iPhones and iPads.
Google Sync keeps your phone’s native mail and calendar apps in sync with your Gmail, Calendar and Contacts. Today, three new updates to Google Sync for iOS will allow you to:
- Search all your emails in Gmail, not just the emails stored locally by the iOS mail app.
- Accept, decline or edit calendar events from the iOS calendar app.
- Send email from the address you want. We recognize that some of you manage multiple email addresses from a single Gmail account.Gmail’s “Send Mail as” feature lets you send messages with another email address listed as the sender instead of your Gmail address, e.g. email@example.com instead of firstname.lastname@example.org. Now the iOS mail app will respect these settings.
These three updates are available to both Gmail and Google Apps email accounts.
For more information, visit Setting up Google Sync with your iOS device
This week in Docs and Sites: Ignore All, Ubuntu, and Site soft delete
June 8, 2011
We’re releasing a small batch of features this week: In Google documents, we added an Ignore all
option to hide all spelling suggestions for a specific word, and a new web font, Ubuntu. We’ve also made it easier to manage your deleted sites in Google Sites.Ignore All
In documents, we already give you the option to add words to your dictionary so we won’t show spelling suggestions for them in the future. That feature is convenient if you’re using a surname that will be reused in many documents. But sometimes there’s a non-dictionary word that’s only used in one doc, which might make you hesitant to add that word to your dictionary for all docs.Ignore All
lets you hide the spelling suggestions for a specific word, but only affects the doc that you currently have opened.Ubuntu
We’re also adding a new font to Google documents: Ubuntu. Earlier this year, we made Ubuntu available in the Google Font API
, and it quickly rose to become one of our most popular fonts. The font was commissioned by Canonical Ltd
and designed by Dalton Maag
as part of the Ubuntu operating system open source project.
Ubuntu has a simple, modern style that’s both recognizable and legible. It’s designed to look great in many sizes, and we hope you’ll find it useful in anything from document text to large poster headlines to small image captions.
You can learn more about Ubuntu and see how to use the font by visiting the Google Font Directory
.Soft delete your sites
We’ve received a lot of feedback that it was sometimes difficult to restore a deleted site, since you needed to remember a deleted site’s URL. Starting today, you will be able to view any sites you’ve deleted in the Deleted sites section of My Sites rather than needing to remember their URLs. In this section, you can also choose to restore your site or delete it permanently before 30 days have passed. Note that as before, after the 30-day grace period, deleted sites will be permanently deleted.
Let us know what you think of these updates. If you have any ideas for new features, submit them to our Product Ideas
page, open until June 16.
Introducing appointment slots in Google Calendar
June 6, 2011
Posted by Irene Chung, Software Engineer
Google Calendar has become indispensable for organizing my own time and sharing my schedule with friends and coworkers. But what about letting others know about my preferred availability? Likewise, when I look at my hairdresser's online calendar, I wonder why I can't just book the open slot instead of remembering to call during regular business hours. Now, with appointment slots in Google Calendar
, any individual or business can manage appointment availability online 24/7.Creating appointment slots
To get started, set up blocks of time you’d like to offer as appointment slots. Simply click anywhere on your calendar and then on "Appointment slots.” From there, create a single block of time or automatically split a larger block of time into smaller appointment slots.
Every Google Calendar has its own personal appointments sign up page; you can embed it on your website or give the URL directly to friends and clients. You can find the URL for your appointment page at the top of the set-up page, which you can access via the Edit details
Signing up for an appointment slot
When someone visits your sign up page, their calendar is overlaid for convenience and they can sign up directly for any available appointment slot. When they sign up, Google Calendar conveniently creates a new shared event on both of your calendars.
At Google, many people are already using appointment slots to manage their office hours or even schedule appointments with on-site fitness instructors. We’re starting to roll it out widely today, and appointment slots should be available for everyone within the next few days. I'm pretty excited to tell my hairdresser about it, and I can't wait to see all of you start to use it too.
Change Google Calendar’s default meeting length and more print options
June 1, 2011
Posted by Grace Kwak, Product Manager
Today we’re adding two features that make it easier to customize Google Calendar. First, you can now change your default event length from the standard 30 minute slot. If you frequently create 15 minute meetings, for example, you can now make 15 minutes the default length for all your events. This way, you don’t need to click into the event page to change the duration every time.
You can change the default length of your events from the Calendar settings page. Next to the “Default meeting length” option, choose the length you’d like from the drop-down menu on the right. From there, you can also enable “Speedy meetings,” which automatically shortens events that are 30 minutes or longer to allow you to prep for your next meeting or get to your next appointment if you have a packed schedule.
Second, for those of you who still prefer paper and print your calendar, you can now select a specific date range in the print dialog box. Google Calendar will automatically format your printout for the date range you choose.
We hope you find these new customization options useful. Let us know what you think on Twitter (@googlecalendar) or in the Google Calendar Help Forum
Our plans to support modern browsers across Google Apps
June 1, 2011
Posted by Venkat Panchapakesan, Vice President of Engineering (Cross-posted on the Gmail Blog and Google Docs Blog.)
For web applications to spring even farther ahead of traditional software, our teams need to make use of new capabilities available in modern browsers. For example, desktop notifications for Gmail
and drag-and-drop file upload in Google Docs
require advanced browsers that support HTML5
. Older browsers just don’t have the chops to provide you with the same high-quality experience.
For this reason, soon Google Apps will only support modern browsers. Beginning August 1st, we’ll support the current and prior major release of Chrome, Firefox, Internet Explorer and Safari on a rolling basis. Each time a new version is released, we’ll begin supporting the update and stop supporting the third-oldest version.
As of August 1st, we will discontinue support
for the following browsers and their predecessors: Firefox 3.5, Internet Explorer 7, and Safari 3. In these older browsers you may have trouble using certain features in Gmail, Google Calendar, Google Talk, Google Docs and Google Sites, and eventually these apps may stop working entirely.
So if it’s been a a while since your last update, we encourage you to get the latest version of your favorite browser. There are many to choose from:
As the world moves more to the web, these new browsers are more than just a modern convenience, they are a necessity for what the future holds.
Introducing the people widget
May 26, 2011
Posted by Zohair Hyder, Software Engineer(Cross-posted on the Google Enterprise Blog)
Email is just as much about the people you communicate with as it is what you communicate about. We think it can be helpful to view relevant information in context, which is why over the next two weeks we’re rolling out a new people widget located on the right hand side of your messages. The people widget surfaces content from friends, family and colleagues that is already available to you but may be hard to find and makes it easier to connect with them.
Next to every email message you can now see contextual information about the people in that conversation including recent emails you received from them, relevant Buzz posts, shared documents and calendar events. You also have quick access to a variety of ways to communicate with individuals, start a group chat or schedule a meeting with groups of people.
We hope the people widget will improve your Gmail experience and we’re eager for you to try it out.
Monday, May 09, 2011 | 9:27 AM
Posted by Michelle Chen, Software Engineer
If your calendar ends up full of many different types of events (film nights, lunch dates, and doctor appointments, for example), there’s now an easy way to categorize them using colors.
Just click on an event, then click the colored square in the top left of the pop-up bubble and pick a new color. If you don’t see this option quite yet, hang tight — it'll be there for everyone within the next day or so.
Only you and anyone else you’ve given edit access to your calendar will be able to see the colors you choose. This has been a feature request from many of you for some time, and we hope you enjoy using it as much as we do.
Upload images in Google Spreadsheets
April 28, 2011
(Cross-posted to the Google Enterprise Blog)
We’re excited to announce that you can now upload images to Google spreadsheets. From theInsert
menu, select Image...
Then, choose an image file to upload into your spreadsheet.
With this feature, you can upload an image already stored on your computer, search for an image online, or add personal photos directly from one of your Picasa Web Albums.
Let us know what you think in the Google spreadsheets forum
Google Sites brings you over 100 new web fonts
April 27, 2011
(Cross-posted to the Google Enterprise Blog)
Ever wanted to make your Google site feel even more unique? Today, we added a wide variety ofGoogle Web Fonts
to Google Sites, making it easier to style your website and make it look awesome.
Now you can go to Manage Site under More Actions and choose Color and Fonts in the left-hand navigation to choose fonts for the entire site in one go. The web fonts feature lets you select different sections of the site such as the entire page or just the title to selectively choose your styling. Additionally, we've given you control over font sizes for many of these sections.
Take a look at a site that uses multiple web fonts:
We’re looking forward to seeing the sites you create with these beautiful new fonts.
Introducing the new Google Docs app for Android
April 27, 2011
Increasingly, people are using mobile phones to access information -- from email to web browsing to editing documents
. Part of getting work done on the go is being able to easily access, edit and share content, which is why we’re happy to announce the new Google Docs app for Android
With this new app it’s easy to filter and search for your content across any Google account, then jump straight into editing docs using the online mobile editors. The app also allows you to easily share items with contacts on your phone, right from within the app.
The Docs app also allows you to upload content from your phone and open documents directly from Gmail. You can also add a widget to your home screen for easy access to three core tasks: jumping to your starred documents, taking a photo to upload, or creating a new document with one tap.
And my favorite feature: Using the app and your phone’s camera, you can turn photos with text into editable Google documents with the power of optical character recognition (OCR)
. Just create a new ‘Document from Photo' or select the camera icon from the widget, and your converted document will appear in your documents list shortly after you snap the picture. You can also convert photos already stored on your phone by sharing
them with the Google Docs app. OCR does a pretty good job capturing unformatted text in English but won't recognize handwriting or some fonts - stay tuned, it will get better over time!
The Google Docs app is currently available in English and works on Android 2.1+ phones. Try it out by scanning the QR code below or by visiting Android Market