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Google Docs adds Grammar Suggestions, Drive nears 1B users, & Smart Reply in Hangouts Chat

At Cloud Next 18, Google announced a number of machine learning-powered updates for G Suite. Smart Reply is now coming to Hangouts Chat and Smart Compose is now available for all G Suite customers, while Google Docs will now offer “grammar suggestions.”

After launching in Gmail and Android Messages earlier this year, Smart Reply is coming to Hangouts Chat in the coming weeks. Analyzing the context of a conversation, Google will offer three suggestions as a carousel of chips at the bottom of the screen. In Gmail, Google notes that Smart Reply powers “more than 10 percent of email replies.”

Smart Compose in Gmail takes Smart Reply a step further by automatically formulating an entire email with greetings, sign offs, common phrases, and personal information like office or home address. Most importantly, replies are personalized. After launching for consumer Gmail accounts, the AI feature is now available for all G Suite customers.

In Google Docs, “grammar suggestions” aim to “catch things like spelling and grammatical errors that inadvertently change the meaning of a sentence.” More advanced that traditional spell check, Google is leveraging a “unique machine translation-based approach to recognize errors and suggest corrections.” Meanwhile, Google Cloud CEO Diane Green noted that Drive is set to hit 1 billion users this week.

Our AI can catch several different types of corrections, from simple grammatical rules like how to use articles in a sentence (like “a” versus “an”), to more complicated grammatical concepts such as how to use subordinate clauses correctly. Machine learning will help improve this capability over time to detect trickier grammar issues. And because it’s built natively in Docs, it’s highly secure and reliable.

A blue underline indicates a “possible grammar correction,” with right-clicking revealing the suggestion. Meanwhile, Docs has a new “Review more suggestions” interface under the “Tools” menu that allows users to quickly run through and “Accept” fixes. The Early Access Program is now open.

Lastly, Google offers Hangouts Meet hardware for conference rooms to quickly schedule calls. Effectively smart speakers, Google is today adding voce commands to these dedicated boxes to simplify the calling process.

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Avatar for Abner Li Abner Li

Editor-in-chief. Interested in the minutiae of Google and Alphabet. Tips/talk: