Previously known as G Suite, Google Workspace tools are now available to everyone with a Google account. In the past, the advanced features were reserved for members associated with a company profile. The major update affects approximately three billion users who will be able to access a wide range of additional features on Gmail, Chat, Calendar, Drive, Docs, Sheets, Meet and several other services included in Google Workspace. Google’s vision is simple: “Provide everyone with a single, integrated communication and collaboration solution via Google Workspace.” Bye market segmentation! In addition to democratizing access to its suite of tools, the digital giant is planning a number of adjustments to respond to the new paradigm of hybrid work. The first example has to do with Google Chat, whose Rooms will be renamed Spaces. The discussion tool is integrated with Gmail, making it possible to chat via private messages or in designated spaces with ease. The unstated goal of Google Chat is probably to overshadow popular software like Discord and Slack. Google has invested a lot of resources into this and has added numerous features, including additional emojis, presence indicators, personalized statuses, reactions, a collapsible view and intelligent moderation. Google Chat’s greatest asset is definitely being integrated with a service that already has several million active users. Google Meet is another example of an evolving service. The new “Companion Mode” provides all participants with access to interactive features, no matter where they are. Examples include polls, meeting discussions, raising your hand to ask a question, Q&A, etc. By September 2021, the Google Workspace suite of tools plans to enable these features on all devices that are compatible with Google Meet, from a Series One to a Nest Hub Max. Starting next month, meetings in Google Meet will be improved with better moderation tools. For example, organizers will be able to block the chat feature in a meeting or mute a participant.
Our point of view
The Google Workspace suite of tools offers a wide range of interesting features that were previously limited by a two-tier system. The change of course that Google has announced reflects a changing reality where needs are rapidly evolving. As was the case when Libéo transitioned to remote work, Google now wants to simplify things for its users. A company’s ability to adapt is a decisive factor when it comes time to assess its market relevance. The news should make everyone in the tech industry happy, as they’ll be able to take advantage of excellent features without using a business account.