Google is confident that with Vids, it has developed the next significant productivity tool for professional use

Slide shows, spreadsheets, and paperwork have dominated the workplace for decades. These programs have taken over the professional scene, from Word, Excel, and PowerPoint to Pages, Numbers, Keynote, and Documents, Sheets, and Slides. Google now hopes to bring in another major participant in this space with Vids, an app that makes creating collaborative, shared videos easier for businesses and consumers alike.

Rather than producing visually spectacular videos, Google Vids focuses on tasks that are frequently performed in professional contexts, such as making presentations, updating teams, or clarifying complex ideas. Google’s vice president of product management for Workspace collaboration apps, Kristina Behr, highlights the app’s objective of expediting the procedure.

“The ethos that we have is, if you can make a slide, you can make a video in Vids,” she says. “No video production is required.” Vids seems, based on my early observations, to be something like turning Google Slides into a video editing application. Users compile resources from Drive and other sources and organize them in a sequential fashion, much like a Slides slide column. But instead of making slides, users build their video’s timeline from left to right. They can then combine self-filmed parts and voiceovers together to create a seamless video. The versatility of Vids theoretically provides for a wide range of content creation possibilities, even though many of the generated videos may resemble taped PowerPoint presentations, Meet calls, or standard training movies having a person speaking from a small corner while visuals play. Users can choose to either work alone to finish the entire movie creation process or use Google’s Gemini AI to help create a rough draft. Gemini may create a storyboard, write a script, narrate a text passage by turning it into speech, and even create graphics for the film. The software also provides a library of pre-cut audio and video clips that users may utilize for their projects. With Vids, sharing a video with others is simple once it’s been generated. As with Google’s other productivity tools, participants can write notes, offer criticism, and even modify the video when it’s shared. Kristina Behr highlights that the sharing process is similar to other Google suite collaborative tools.

Although there is an option to export to MP4, the goal is to make the collaboration feature look like other Google Workspace apps. As far as Google is concerned, there are no significant differences between the collaborative capabilities of a spreadsheet and a movie. Similar activities are becoming easier to complete with a variety of tools, from whole editing suites like Descript to video chat platforms like Loom.

While other companies, like ClickUp, are incorporating video functionality straight into their suites of productivity tools, Vimeo has evolved into a service primarily used by businesses to create short marketing movies. Even though Google entered this market later than its competitors, it believes that employees will devote more of their workday to creating videos rather than traditional tasks like writing emails in an era of remote work and video-centric culture. The main benefit for Google is that Vids can be easily integrated with all of its other powerful products. Behr claims that further support for mobile devices and deep interaction with other Google products are planned. One noteworthy omission, though, is any mention of interaction with YouTube, another Google-owned video platform. Recognizing this, Behr emphasizes that Vids and YouTube have different audiences and use cases, with Vids being especially designed for usage in the office. This summer, Vids will go into public beta after being tested by a few Workspace users. From these early testing, Behr observes certain developing tendencies, such as the prevalence of short movies (usually less than three minutes) that highlight pitches, training, updates, and individual accomplishments.

Vids might have been a feature inside Slides or Docs, Google’s choice to make it a stand-alone program points to a deeper meaning. It provides a completely new method of information sharing rather than merely being another display tool. Although the lifespan of any Google product is unknown, Google’s faith in the potential influence of Vids is evident from the way Docs, Sheets, and Slides are ingrained in the tech industry.

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