Not content to merely be an app that excels at messaging, Slack has revealed it is coming for Google’s office tools crown with its new Canvas feature, first announced in September 2022.
The idea is that, because any messaging app in the workplace is a fast-moving, mostly irrelevant cacophony, canvases (essentially individual documents, think Google Docs) will allow for storing and quickly referring to information.
Per The Verge, the Canvas rollout has now begun, although our quick internal team survey found not all Slack users have received it just yet, so some users may just have to wait that little bit longer.
Productivity tools, and “the everything app”
Not that it really matters: if your workplace uses Slack, it’s probably because it’s notable as a very good messaging app that, for a time, offered features Google Chat just didn’t, like threaded conversations, @ mentions, or (admittedly a less earth-shattering development) emoji reactions.
It’s more of an equal playing field now, but if your workplace started using Slack because it excels in messaging more than any other area, it probably also uses another productivity tool better designed for producing, organizing and sharing documents, like Google Workspace or Microsoft 365.
What’s more bizarre is that Slack does allow for integration with the third party applications, such as Google Drive, that you already use at work. Did we need this? Honestly? Are software companies so devoid of ideas that they just need to do everything now?
Even Ali Rayl, Slack’s Product SVP, says “Google Docs 100 percent still has a place in our universe.” It’s convenient, maybe, to have essentially an identical, if less good version of it directly in Slack, but good luck getting your colleagues to adopt one or the other. Prepare for chaos. Civil war.
- Here’s our list of the best collaboration tools right now