Google Docs, Slides, Sheets Receive Physical Keyboard Support

Google Docs, Google Slides, and Google Sheets were updated with on-screen control support for physical keyboards earlier this week, with the Mountain View, California-based tech giant starting to roll out the latest feature for its popular Android apps on Tuesday. The feature is the biggest highlight of all three updates, with Google's changelogs also mentioning various bug fixes and performance enhancements without elaborating on the matter. The functionality itself allows you to use a physical keyboard to perform the same navigational actions that you would otherwise activate with on-screen controls within any of the three apps.

Navigating various menus and on-screen controls of the apps using a physical keyboard likely isn't something that many Android users will ever attempt, though Google presumably introduced this functionality with Chromebook owners in mind. An increasing number of Chrome OS devices can now run Android apps, and anyone looking to use the Android version of Google Docs, Google Sheets, and Google Slides over their web counterparts for any reason can now do so more efficiently on their Chromebook. Google has yet to detail the new feature in a manner that's more elaborate than a single changelog line, though all updates are already available for download from the Google Play Store in all parts of the world and users can try them themselves.

Being the most popular of the three apps, Google Docs is also the one that's updated most frequently, though all have been receiving fairly regular software revisions from Google in recent years. Just a few days back, the Alphabet-owned company rolled out support for smart text selection in Google Docs, thus making yet another step in the process of preparing its mobile service for the release of Android O, with predictive text selection being one of many significant additions that the next major iteration of the operating system will bring. Following the release of the fourth and final Developer Preview of Android O in mid-July, Google is now expected to push the OS to the stable channel by the end of August, with its Pixel lineup and compatible Nexus devices being the first to receive it.

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Dominik Bosnjak

Head Editor
Dominik started at AndroidHeadlines in 2016 and is the Head Editor of the site today. He’s approaching his first full decade in the media industry, with his background being primarily in technology, gaming, and entertainment. These days, his focus is more on the political side of the tech game, as well as data privacy issues, with him looking at both of those through the prism of Android. Contact him at [email protected]