The rivalry between Google and Microsoft has recently heated up as they compete to take the lead in the AI race. Google has announced a significant update to Workspace, bringing generative AI to nearly all of its Office suites, in response to Microsoft 365 Copilot to integrate AI into Microsoft 365 apps such as Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook, and Teams.
The update includes a new developer solution that provides developers with Google’s underlying models, including the 540 billion parameters large-scale language model PaLM for multi-turn chat, with APIs and new low-code tools.
However, these new features will only be available to “Trusted Testers” for now, and there is no indication of when they will be available to more users or the pricing. Nevertheless, Google plans to roll out new features every two to three weeks throughout the year.
Google plans to incorporate AI into virtually every workflow in Workspace, with generative AI models being introduced in almost all parts of Workspace, such as creating emails with Gmail, helping write (or rewrite) documents with Docs, generating equations with Sheets, taking notes with Meet, and text, images, audio, and video with Slides. Google also aims to incorporate AI into Google Chat to support some of these features.
One impressive feature demonstrated by Google is the combination of text-based work with generative AI models that generate images and music, which can then be used to create full-fledged presentations. With this new feature, Slides allows users to generate insights and images from the text in their slides, giving them the ability to create soundtracks and superpower their presentations.
Despite the fear of being overtaken by OpenAI, Google remains optimistic about incorporating AI into its workflow. The company promises “trusted testers” to get some AI features later this month, but this is only for testing and not public release. These features are expected to be costly and may be exclusive to Google Workspace paying customers.