Google Cloud on Tuesday introduced a slew of updates to its Workspace portfolio, largely centered around making its collaboration products more immersive. One of the new features coming to Workspace is the Speaker spotlight feature in Google Slides, which lets you add a video feed of yourself into your presentation rather than right next to it.
Google’s focus on “immersive connections” refers to “our approach to bringing people closer together through our communication products,” Aparna Pappu, Google Cloud VP and GM of Workspace, said to reporters ahead of the Google Cloud Next conference.
By creating one, cohesive view of the presentation and the presenter, the audience will be able to follow along more easily, Google reasons — even if they’re watching the presentation asynchronously, after it’s been delivered.
Google is also adding adaptive framing to Google Meet, its videoconferencing service, with the help of AI-powered cameras from Huddly and Logitech. With this feature, Meet will be able to detect and frame speakers, so the focus is always in the most helpful spot.
Google Meet is getting a variety of other upgrades, such as automatic meeting transcription and automatic video framing.
Google Chat, meanwhile, is getting custom emojis and inline threaded conversations. Google is also adding broadcast-only spaces in Chat, so leaders can make broad announcements across their organizations.
Google is also doubling down on its “smart canvas” experiences, which are making tools like Google Docs more collaborative. For instance, Google is adding “smart chips” to Google Sheets. They’re also adding smart chip data extraction, so users can quickly populate spreadsheets with important information from chips they use across Workspace.