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Google Workspace and Google Chat are officially available to everybody

The Verge: “Google is announcing some changes to its Workspace suite of apps and services today, including availability for anybody who has a Google account. Google says that there are over three billion users of its Workspace apps — though it’s probably a safe bet that Gmail accounts for a healthy chunk of that userbase. A lot of people will soon have the option to switch over to Google’s more modern system for Gmail, Docs, and Chat. All of them can be integrated in a single tab more easily, for example with chats sliding over to the left to reveal a shared spreadsheet. It’s also related to the company’s new “smart canvas” push, which is also designed to interlink its various apps via “smart chips.” To get started, Google is now officially offering the setting to turn on Google Chat to all users. It’s a new setting within Gmail…The key idea, according to Sanaz Ahari, senior director of product, is that users can more easily switch between “modalities” of communication. The intent is to “keep the context,” Ahari says. “If you start something with an email and then you want to upgrade it into more real-time interaction between a group — or even for a project — you’re able to do that and you can keep the context. Then you can all seamlessly upgrade into a meeting at the same time.”..

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