Google begins rolling out its new look for Docs and other Workspace apps

Docs, Sheets, Slides and Drive are getting new features and UIs based on Material Design 3.

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Your Google Docs, Sheets, Slides and Drive might look quite different in the coming days. The tech giant has started rolling out the updated look and feel it promised for them last month based on its Material Design 3 language. In Docs, Sheets and Slides, Google is making it easier to find frequently used actions with a simplified user interface. The company is also moving some elements around to reduce clutter, including putting the edit and version history under a single clock icon at the top right corner of the app. Plus, Google is improving Docs' commenting experience — even adding emoji reactions that can be used to emphasize, upvote or disagree with responses — and updating its rulers and gridlines.

As for Drive, the tech giant is introducing the ability to select multiple items at once to enable batch actions. It's adding new search categories, such as type (PDF, documents, videos and zips), owner and last modified, as well, to make sorting and finding files a lot easier. Those two combined could cut the time you need to do frequent tasks involving several files of the same type. Within individual files, Google will now start surfacing key actions inline "for quick access and increased productivity."

These features are now making their way to users, but it could take up to 15 days before they reach your apps. When Google announced its Workspace redesign in February, it also launched other features that included adding a stopwatch directly inside Docs that you could use to boost productivity. For Sheets, it added the capability to put Maps links directly in the app to aid in event or logistics planning. The app also got new shortcuts that let you quickly add relevant dates to a sheet simply by typing in @ with the appropriate keyword, like @today.