Google Updates for LionMail

Check out this page for highlights of upgrades and changes to Columbia's G Suite implementation, which includes LionMail, Calendar, Drive and more.

G Suite apps currently under evaluation

See our Google Apps for LionMail page for a list of the applications enabled by CUIT outside of the core set of Google services (Mail, Contacts, Calendar, Drive).

  • Adwords
  • Sites
  • Team Drive
  • Jamboard

Recent G Suite updates

For a full report on updates from Google, see the official G Suite Update Blog. Please note that Columbia's G Suite administrators do not offer all G Suite features for a variety of reasons, including security, data protection and support.

Quick launch summary

Earlier this year we introduced a beta for new grammar suggestions in Google Docs. Now we’re making this feature available for G Suite Basic, Business, and Enterprise users*.

The new features enhance existing spell check functions and highlight possible grammatical errors in your text. We’re also introducing a revamped interface for reviewing spelling and grammar suggestions which makes it faster and easier to spot and correct errors in your text.

Some improvements you’ll see are:

  • Grammar
    • Possible grammar corrections will be underlined in blue. To see a suggested correction or dismiss the alert, simply right-click.
    • You will also see possible grammar errors when running a spelling and grammar check through the Tools menu.
  • New language review interface
    • You can easily review all language suggestions for your document with the updated spelling and grammar check tool.
    • Access it through the “Tools” menu or right-click on a suggestion and select “Review more suggestions” — you’ll see each suggestion and actions to correct any errors.

Quick launch summary

You can now access the side panel while using Drive on the web. That means you can access Calendar, Keep, and Task while using Drive, Gmail, Calendar, or Editor products (Docs, Sheets, and Slides).

The side panel makes it easy to quickly complete tasks without losing focus — that means less switching between apps and increased productivity, whether you're grabbing information from Calendar, Keep, or Tasks.

Check your calendar, notes, or tasks

  1. On a computer, go to GmailCalendar, or a file in Google DocsSheets, or Slides.
  2. At the right, choose:
    • Calendar: Check your schedule and add or edit events.
    • Keep: Create a note or list.
    • Tasks: Add to-do items and deadlines.
  3. To close the right sidebar, at the top right, click Close .

My Maps, a Google Maps service that allows you to create and share custom maps, has been enabled for LionMail. Using My Maps, you can drop a pin on locations that you would like to flag or highlight for yourself or others.

Quick launch summary
We’re making Enterprise improvements to the Google Drive search box on desktop available to all G Suite Editions.

Now, when you click in the search box you’ll see a range of options, including:

  • Suggested search queries: Click on a term to search for it.
  • Your top collaborators: Click on a person to search for files that you’ve collaborated with them on.
  • File types, edit history, priority items, and more: Click to show files that match the highlighted criteria.

These filters will help you find and filter content more quickly and efficiently in Drive.

Intelligent search options appear when you click the Drive search box

CUIT has enabled Google Hangouts Chat for all LionMail users, bringing enhanced functionality to messaging at Columbia. Hangouts Chat will automatically replace Google Talk in the left-hand navigation pane of your LionMail interface. You can also download the app for iOS or Android, allowing you to continue messaging on the go.

The basic messaging functionality remains the same, but now you can send images, hold group chats, and create chat rooms for your team or club. Hangouts Chat also integrates closely with Google Drive, allowing you to collaborate easily on Docs, Sheets, and Slides.

Visit Google’s Learning Center to see all the ways you can use Hangouts.

In addition to messaging, Hangouts Meet offers video meeting capabilities and conveniently integrates with your Google Calendar.

Please Note: If you do not see the new Hangouts interface within your LionMail inbox screen, please sign out, then sign back into LionMail. 

Additionally, during the upgrade from Google Talk to Hangouts Chat, your existing chat contacts were removed. Google has confirmed that this is a known issue. To re-add your contacts, simply search for the individual's name within the Hangouts Chat interface and begin a conversation. Once you have had at least one conversation using Hangouts Chat, the individual should remain in your contact list.

Quick launch summary

We're moving notification settings for classic Hangouts conversations to notification channels on O+ Android devices. With these changes, customized ring tones and chat messaging tones per conversation/contact will be removed and defaulted to the general app settings.

To view or edit the ring and chat messaging tone settings for classic Hangouts on your Android device, open the classic Hangouts app and, in a conversation, click the more menu > “Options.” 

Options are found in the menu after you have opened a conversation in the classic Hangouts app

What’s changing: adding more options to the right-click context menu in Gmail.

Right-click on a message to display menu options conveniently

What’s changing: We're adding three new features to Gmail:

  • Shortcut to undo/redo in the compose window
  • Shortcut to strikethrough text
  • Ability to download messages as .EML files in rfc822 format from Gmail on the web

Why you’d use it

  • Undo/Redo: If you need to undo an action, like if you accidentally delete the content of your draft of an email, you can do so straight from the compose view. Anytime you have undo, you want to also have the option of redo, so we’ve added that as well.
  • Strikethrough: Strikethrough is a visual cue that something has been completed or can be used as an edit suggestion. We’ve heard from you that this functionality is critical to quickly and efficiently write emails, especially when you want to visually indicate a change in language.
  • Download as .EML: This format is recognized by other email clients, allowing you to view the Gmail content along with attachments within these clients. In addition, with this functionality users can now add these downloaded messages as attachments in their emails.

How to get started

  • End users - new compose formatting: Click on the formatting menu in the Gmail compose window.
  • End users - new download format: Open the overflow (three dot) menu and select “Download message.”
Undo, redo and strikethrough options are found in the formatting tool bar when composing an email
To download an email, click the three dots in the upper right corner of the message and select Download message

What’s changing: Google Docs, Sheets, Slides, and Sites will be getting a new look and feel on the web. While there are no functionality changes, users will notice some visual improvements, including:

  • Interface typography that uses Google’s custom-designed and highly-legible typefaces
  • Controls (like buttons, dialogs, and sidebars) that are updated and consistent
  • Iconography that is legible and crisp, with a fresh feel

The four products in this update join other G Suite products like Gmail and Calendar in sharing a common design language.

What’s changing: Now you can embed Google Drawings files saved in Drive into Google Docs and update the content of linked drawings embedded in Docs. When the source file is updated, you’ll see an “Update” button in the upper right hand corner of the embedded drawing.

Use the Insert menu to add a Google Drawing into Google Docs from Drive

What’s changing: Now, when you’re working on a chart in Sheets, you can give a design element (such as a bar on a bar graph or a point or line on a line graph) a unique color, instead of all similar elements being the same color. This works for bar charts, column charts, line charts, scatter charts and for certain series in combination charts.

To edit individual points and bars:

  1. On your computer, open a spreadsheet in Google Sheets.
  2. On the chart, right click the bar or point.
  3. Click Format Data Point.
  4. Make your changes.
Chart within Google Sheets displaying unique design color

CUIT has enabled Google Drive File Stream, allowing you to find and open your files from Google Drive on your computer. You can:

  • Save specific files and folders offline.
  • View and organize your files in your computer’s file system without using storage space.
  • Open files on your computer.

To download File Stream, please see Google's Drive Help page.

CUIT has enabled Google Takeout, allowing you to to export your data to a downloadable archive file, such as a ZIP file. You can download your Gmail, Contacts, Photos, and much more. For a full list of data types, and to find out how much you have of each, sign in to your Google account, then visit your Google Dashboard. To download data, the easiest place to start is Google's Takeout page.

Option to opt out to be removed after October 16th, 2018

Soon after October 16th, 2018, any users who’ve opted out of the new Gmail will be automatically migrated to the new experience. They won’t be able to opt out after that date. Users who’ve already transitioned to the new Gmail will lose the ability to opt out as well.

Update (October 26, 2018): Please note that we're still migrating some remaining G Suite users to the new Gmail. We anticipate completing this migration in the next few weeks.

Settings you can update to make the modern design display more similar to the classic design:

  1. Click the gear in the upper-right corner of LionMail and select Display Density and choose Compact.
  2. Click the gear in the upper-right corner of LionMail and select Settings. In the General section, under Hover Actions, choose Disable hover actions. You can also turn off Smart Compose (the predictive writing suggestions) and Nudges (reminders to reply to emails) in this section.
  3. Click the gear in the upper-right corner of LionMail and select Settings. In the Themes section, scroll down and select the High Contrast theme.
High Contrast theme, found in LionMail Settings, creates a similar feel as "classic gmail"

In response to user feedback, we’re adding a vertical ruler in Google Docs on the web that will help you manipulate tables and control the margins in headers and footers.

Better table management with new vertical ruler 

When you’re using a table, you’ll see your table structure highlighted in a vertical ruler on the left side of the screen. The vertical ruler matches the horizontal ruler, which already exists and is a popular way to control cell width and margins.

You can use the ruler to change the height of rows in the table. When you do so, you’ll see a guide telling you the specific height of the row so you can quickly format it to the specific size you want. You can also use it to control the vertical margins in headers and footers.

New controls over header and footer layout 

We recently added new controls which let you specify the size of the margins in your header and footer. You can control the margins using the vertical ruler feature highlighted above or by using the interface pictured below. By controlling this spacing, you can make sure your document is formatted just as you want it.

Headers and footers controls in Google Docs

The Explore feature in Google Docs and Slides makes it simple to search for Google Drive files related to whatever you’re currently working on. With this launch, G Suite Basic, Business, and Enterprise users can view images and charts in those files—right from within the Explore panel—and insert them quickly and easily into their document or presentation.

You can find the Explore feature in the Tools menu at the top of the menu bar in Docs, Slides and Sheets.

Google Explore feature displays as right-hand panel in Google Slides
An integration of an image suggested by Google Explore into Google Slides

You can now show automated closed captions in real-time when presenting in Google Slides. This feature uses your computer’s microphone to detect your spoken presentation, and then transcribes what you say as captions on the slides you’re presenting. We hope that this will make your presentations more effective in more environments to a wider audience.

Captions created automatically from your audio 

If you turn captions on, Google Slides will use the audio from your microphone to automatically create captions of what you say. These captions will display in real time at the bottom of your screen to all audience members watching the presentation. This will work for local presentations and for presentations over video conferencing software, where captions will show on the shared screen.

The feature works in U.S. English on Chrome browsers. Captions are created from the presenter’s computer and its microphone, so captions may not work consistently if there are multiple presenters using different computers. You may want to let the audience know that captions are from Google Slides, not the video conferencing software, and that only the speaker's voice is captioned.

Helps improve accessibility and in environments where it’s hard to hear 

This feature can help make your presentation more effective for:

  • Audience members who are deaf or hard of hearing 
  • Non-native speakers and/or audience members who prefer written content 
  • In venues with poor audio or in noisy ambient environments 
  • Quick YouTube video on Google Slides -
PLEASE NOTE: Google is making Smart Compose available to Columbia's LionMail users on a rolling basis, and it is currently scheduled to become widely available on or by October 15, 2018. As of November 13, 2018, the feature appears to have been rolled out to all LionMail users.

Smart Compose in now available to G Suite users, it intelligently auto-completes your emails. At launch, it can fill in common phrases and relevant addresses, like that of your home and office; in the future, it will get smarter—learning your most-used greetings.

Smart Compose is on by default for all G Suite users. They can turn it off in their Gmail general settings (Smart Compose > Writing suggestions off).

Visit the Help Center for more details on how to use Smart Compose.