Working with remote and in-office colleagues? Learn how to thrive in hybrid work environments.

Get started with Google Chat

Collaborate in Chat

Want to get more out of Google apps at work or school?  Sign up for a free Google Workspace trial
""

Chat

With Google Chat, you can share ideas and brainstorm with co-workers and teams, start a video meeting on the fly, or schedule an event in Google Calendar right in your chat conversation.

Start a video meeting

When you’re collaborating with your team, sometimes it’s better to meet face-to-face. Start an impromptu video meeting in Chat or Gmail with your team members.

Start a video meeting from Chat

  1. Go to Chat "" or Gmail .
  2. Open a chat message.
  3. In the reply area, click Add video meeting Start a video meeting and then Send "".
  4. To join a video meeting, click Join video meeting and then Join now.

Start a video meeting from Chat in Gmail

  1. Sign in your Gmail account.
  2. ​Open a chat message.
  3. In the reply area, click Add "" and then Add video meeting  and then Send "" and then Join video meeting and then Join now.
Schedule and share a Calendar meeting
  1. Open Gmail or Google Chat.
  2. Open a chat message or space.
  3. In the reply area, click Schedule calendar event "".

    You might need to click Show action buttons "" first.

  4. The soonest available time slot is selected, but you can change the details.
  5. Click Save & shareand thenSend.
Send and share files in chat messages

You can add files from your computer, mobile device, or Google Drive directly to Chat messages.

  1. Go to Chat "" or Gmail .
    • Optional: Enter a message.
  2. Choose an option:
    • To add an emoji, click Emoji "".
    • To attach a file from your computer, click Upload file "".
      • The file is not added to Drive. Other users get the file directly in the message.
    • To attach a Drive file, click Add Google Drive file "".
      • When you send the file, you’re notified if someone needs access.
      • With Edit access, you have an option to grant access.
      • If you grant access to a space, people who join the space later also have access.
      • If people leave the space, they lose access to the file unless they’re given access individually or through a group.
    • To add a link to a video meeting, click Add video meeting "".
    • To create a Google Calendar invite, click Schedule calendar event event.
    • To send a GIF, click GIF .
  3. Optional: If you attach a file, select the file you want to send.
  4. Click Send "".
Tip: If you use Google Chat on a work or school account, you may not have the option to send a GIF.
Attach a file to a discussion
Create and collaborate on files in spaces

You can create a shared document in a chat space without the need to switch windows. When you create a Google Docs, Sheets, or Slides file, you instantly share it with the chat space.

Create and share files

  1. Open Gmail.
  2. Select a space.
  3. From the conversation, in the reply area, click Create new document "".
  4. Choose the type of file you want to create.
  5. Enter a name.
  6. Click Share.

Tip: When you create a document, people in the space get a notification.

Collaborate on documents and spreadsheets

You can collaborate on shared Google Docs and Sheets with people directly in a space. The document or spreadsheet opens in the chat window, next to the conversation, where you can chat while you collaborate on the file together.

When you collaborate on a file with people in a space, you can edit, format, share, and rename it without leaving Gmail or Google Chat. To work with comments or use other features from Docs or Sheets, open the file in a new tab.

Tip: You can also collaborate on existing Google Docs and Sheets in 1:1 messages.

  1. Open Google Chat or your Gmail account.
  2. Select a space. Expand the space to full screen.
    • To open an already shared document, point to it in the chat then click Open in chat "". The document opens to the right where you can make edits directly without changing tabs.
    • To create a shared document within a space, in the reply area of the conversation tab, click Create new document "".
  3. At the top right, click Close "".
  4. Optional: To open the document in a new browser tab, at the top right of the conversation preview, click Open in a new tab "".

View and manage files

  1. Open Google Chat or your Gmail account.
  2. Select the space.
  3. At the top, click the Files tab.
    • Tip: In Gmail, you might have to expand the space to view the Files tab.
  4. To open the file, click the name of the file.
    • Google files: File opens in the chat window, next to the conversation, or opens in a new browser tab.
    • Other types of files: File opens as a preview in full screen. Files not in Drive will download, except PDF and video files, which open in a new browser tab.

Optional: To view or save a file, next to the file, click:

  • "": Adds a shortcut to Drive
  • : Opens the chat message that shared the file

Remove files

Send files in a chat message

Important: When you share files in Google Chat, they may shrink. Smaller files upload faster, but may have a lower resolution.

  1. Open the Chat app "" or Gmail app "".
  2. Enter your message and choose an option:
    • To attach an image, tap Insert image "".
    • To take and send a photo, tap Take photo ""and then take a photo.
    • To attach a Drive file, tap Add Google Drive file "".
      • When you send the file, you get a message if the space or a person doesn't have access. If you have Edit access to the file, you get an option to grant access. If you grant access to a space, it also applies to people who join the space later.
    • To send a link to a video meeting, tap Add a video meeting "".
    • To create a Google Calendar invite, select Schedule calendar event event.
  3. Optional: If you attach a file, select the file you want to send.
  4. Tap Send "".

View & manage files in a space

You can view a list of files shared in a space, open a file, and add a file to Drive. Image files aren't listed.

  1. Open the Chat app "" or Gmail app "".
  2. At the bottom, tap Spaces Rooms and then select the space.
  3. At the top, tap the Files tab.
  4. To open the file, tap the name of the file.
  • If installed, Drive files open in the Drive app "".

Optional: To view or save a file, next to the file, tap More options "" and then:

  • View in chat: Opens the chat message where the file was shared.
  • Add shortcut to Drive: Saves a shortcut to Drive.

Tips:

  • Image files aren't listed in the Files tab in spaces.
  • If you aren’t able to add files to Drive and you use a Google Workspace account, contact your administrator.

Remove a file

Important: You must use a Google Workspace account to remove a file from a space.

  1. Open the Chat app "" or Gmail app "".
  2. At the bottom, tap Spaces Roomsand then select the space.
  3. At the top, tap the Files tab. Next to the file, tap More options Moreand then View in chat .
  4. Touch and hold the message with the file.
  5. Tap Delete Deleteand then Delete.

Tips:

  • If you delete a file in Drive, the file link remains in the space until you delete it from the chat message where it was shared.
    • If you don't delete it from the chat, the file link will show a "File in Trash" message when you select it.
    • If you don't delete it from the chat and Drive trash is emptied, you won't be able to open the file from the file link.
  • When you delete the file from the chat message, the file link is removed from chat and the Files tab of the space.

Deleting a file removes it from the Files tab in the space, but doesn't remove the file from Drive.

Create and assign tasks in spaces

As a member of a space in Chat, you can create and manage group tasks and assign tasks to other space members. Tasks display in the space where they're created and in the assignee’s personal tasks in Google Tasks. When someone creates or updates a task, such as assigning or completing the task, a notification appears in the space.

Create and assign tasks

  1. Open Gmail or Google Chat.
  2. Select the space where you want to create a task.
  3. On the top, click the Tasks tab and then Add space task.
    Tip: In Gmail, you might have to expand the space to view the Tasks tab.
  4. Enter the task title.
  5. Optional: To add a description or more details, click Add details and enter the information.
  6. Optional: To add a date and time, click Add date/time and then Make selections and then click OK.
    Tip: If you add a date and time to your task, you get notifications at the scheduled dates and times.
  7. Optional: To assign the task to a member of the space, click Assign and then click the name of the person. To assign the task to someone who isn't a member of the space, invite them to the space first.
    Tip: If the assignee leaves the space, the task remains in the space and in their personal task list in Google Tasks.
  8. Click Add.

After you create a task, a notification appears in the space to let everyone know.

Edit tasks

  1. Open Gmail or Google Chat.
  2. Select the space.
  3. On the top, click the Tasks tab and then select the task.
    Tip: In Gmail, you might have to expand the space to view the Tasks tab.
  4. Click the title, details, date and time, or assignee and make the changes.

If you have a task in your personal task list, you can edit the task title, details, and date or time from your personal task list. Any changes update the task for everyone in the space and a notification appears.

Mark tasks complete or incomplete

If a space task is assigned to you, the task appears on your personal task list. You can mark the task complete from your personal task list or from the space. The task status updates in both places. 

  1. Open Gmail or Google Chat.
  2. Select a space.
  3. At the top, click Tasks.

    In Gmail, you might need to expand the space to see the Tasks tab.

  4. Next to a task, click Mark complete "".
  5. If you need to reopen a task, at the bottom, under Completed, click Mark incomplete "".

    You might need to click Expand "" to see your tasks.

Delete tasks

Deleting a task deletes it for all members of the space and from the assignee’s personal task list.

  1. Open Gmailor Google Chat.
  2. Select the space.
  3. On the top, click the Tasks tab and then select the task.
    Tip: In Gmail, you might have to expand the space to view the Tasks tab.
  4. At the top right, click Delete ""and then Delete.
 
Search in Chat

Need to search for a specific word or project? With Chat, you can search in direct messages or spaces for @mentions and look for content, such as videos, documents, presentations, and more.

Search messages in Chat

  1. Go to Google Chat or your Gmail account.
  2. At the top, click in the search box that says “Search all conversations” or “Search in chat and spaces.” 
  3. Enter search text and press Enter.
    • In Gmail: Under the search box, click Chat & Spaces.
  4. To open a result, click on it. 
Search spaces, contacts, messages under "Choose Where To Search"

Search chat messages in Gmail

  1. Go to Google Chat or your Gmail account.
  2. Select the space or conversation you want to search.
  3. At the top right, click Search in this chat "".
  4. Enter search text.
  5. Press Enter.
  6. To open a result, click on it.
Turn a group chat into a chat space

With a chat space, you can name the space, share files, and assign tasks with other people in the space.

  1. Go to Google Chat or your Gmail account.
  2. From the Chat panel, find and click the group chat you want to change to a space.
  3. At the top, next to the group chat name, click the Down arrow Drop down arrowand then Turn this chat into a space .
  4. Add a space name. To add an optional space icon, click Add "".
  5. Click Done. A notification confirms your chat is now a space, and notifies members in the group of the change.
After you make the change, you can find chat, files, and tasks tabs in your space.
 


Google, Google Workspace, and related marks and logos are trademarks of Google LLC. All other company and product names are trademarks of the companies with which they are associated.

Was this helpful?
How can we improve it?
Search
Clear search
Close search
Google apps
Main menu
Search Help Center
false