More and more people are relying on services like Google Chat to stay in touch. Whether you’re keeping in contact with family or collaborating with a team for work, Chat has become a critical part of Google’s suite of services, and new updates are making it even better.
The first change is the ability to pin conversations. Pinning a conversation will keep it at the top of your list view in Chat in Gmail. You might want to pin a conversation for a contact you talk to often, like a loved one or best friend. The feature is available beginning this week for a variety of customers, including Workspace Essentials and G Suite Basic.
A second update will allow users to schedule meetings in Calendar directly from Chat conversations. In the compose bar, there’s a new calendar icon, which users can click on to draft an event with the attendees from the chat. Users can customize the invite, including day, time, and attendees, and then send it right from the chat.
If you’re using Google Chat in mobile, drafting an event will open the Calendar app. If you’re drafting an event on the web while using Chat, Calendar will pop out in the side panel. Google said the feature is rolling out to Chat in the Android Gmail app and the Chat Android mobile app. It’ll be available to the Chat in Gmail on the web and Chat iOS app soon.
These releases don’t introduce any flagship features, but they do improve the usability of Chat in important ways. Being able to pin conversations is especially handy if you frequently interact with a lot of people but want to keep someone at the top of the list. The latest features join a recent update that unthreaded chat rooms to make conversations things easier to follow.
With the COVID-19 pandemic still spreading across the world, Chat has become an important tool for staying in touch. We’re glad to see Google continuing to improve the experience.