You can almost do anything on smartphones these days, especially if you connect a large display and peripherals. Even more so on tablets with their large screens and keyboard accessories. That said, there are still many things you can’t do on a phone, or at least can’t do comfortably on such a small screen. One of the biggest culprits there is productivity or office suites that are designed by nature to be used on larger devices. But with the world moving towards a more remote and more mobile reality, Google is updating its G Suite to make the experience less painful on phones.
There’s no getting around the fact that viewing documents on a phone isn’t going to be the most comfortable, even with 6.9-inch screens. Google is pushing a few changes that will at least scale content to a more comfortable level. For example, you’ll be able to view presentations in Google Slides as a vertically scrolling document that you can pinch to zoom to see the smaller details.
There’s also a new Link Preview in Google Docs that won’t throw you out of the document into another app or window immediately. Instead, you’ll get a small card that shows some of the details about the linked content, allowing you to decide when to open it in full at your own convenience.
But it isn’t just about viewing documents either. Google is also integrating some of the features it already has on the Web version of Google Docs into the mobile apps. In addition to Smart Compose, which made its debut on Gmail, users will now be able to open Microsoft Office files directly in the mobile apps, skipping the process of having to convert between file formats first.
Google is also adding or improving some of Google Docs’ collaborative features, like commenting on specific files or even responding to those comments directly from the Gmail mobile app. These features won’t exactly make working from your phone a joy but they will hopefully reduce some of the stress when you do need to.