Alphabet’s Google said on Wednesday its corporate Gmail customers would now be able to edit documents and other files without leaving the email service.
The announcement by Google was made at cloud unit’s annual customer and partner conference.
The tech giant has been trying for more than a decade to catch up with Microsoft’s Office, which dominates the global market for corporate email and document-editing tools.
Both companies have been adding video-calling features and other collaboration tools to attract new business from companies operating from home during the pandemic.
Google contends it has found an edge with potential customers by promoting Gmail as a single hub for workers to access text chats, video calls, and now documents. Microsoft has limited tie-ins between its email and chat tools, Outlook and Teams.
“Microsoft is still telling you there are two separate places to check, two different habits, two inboxes to look at,” Javier Soltero, a Google vice president who used to work for Microsoft, said in an interview.
“They are not incentivised to do a deep integration between Teams and Outlook,” Soltero said.
Consumers using the free version of Gmail may have access to the new integrations in the future, Soltero said.
Microsoft, which has continued to post fast Office revenue growth, declined to comment.
Google on Wednesday introduced some options already on Microsoft Teams, including the ability for chat users to list an “out of office” notice and “pin” conversations to make them easier to find later.
Earlier, Google had leaked the details of its Pixel phones itself, whether by mistake or intentionally.
Furthermore, it unveiled the date of Pixel 3 and Pixel 4 before the official announcement and this year also leaked the new cheap Pixel 4A itself.
For some mysterious reason, the new phone appeared on the Canadian page of the company’s Google Nest Wi-Fi.
The leak confirms what the design will look like, which is very similar to the Pixel 4, with a camera hole-punch design instead of a dual on the front.