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Back in April of this year (2019), Google announced that it would be integrating Google Assistant with the G-Suite productivity environment. This service would allow users to remind themselves to do essential tasks with the help of an automated assistant in Google Calendar and other essential tools. However, at the beginning of August, users on G-Suite started to notice that Google Assistant had suddenly stopped working
Instead, users are being presented with the message "Sorry; reminders are currently not available for G-suite users". Currently, Google states that this loss functionality is intentional. The company has announced that it is no longer supporting the option for G-Suite to use the Assistant for reminders, as they're working on improving the experience. Hopefully, this will mean that G-Suite users will see more advanced features coming in the future to help them enhance their productivity and keeping track of their schedule.
In the meantime, G-Suite users have a few workarounds that they can try. For instance, you could use Google search to remind you to do something by typing or saying, "Remind me to [do something] at [time/date].". This should process the request and add it to your reminders - for as long as reminders continue to work on the Google web interface. You can also consider reverting the Google app to an older version so you can continue to use the native reminder UI. However, this could be a dangerous strategy for privacy and security reasons. Older versions of software don't always work as securely as their updates. There's also the option to add a reminder to your schedule from Google Calendar.
New Features for Google Productivity
Although one of the features that companies might have wanted for productivity purposes has bit the dust (at least for now), Google is hoping to distract customers with other functionalities instead. For instance, Google has continued to implement advanced new machine-learning powered features into the G-Suite space over the last month or so. In Google Drive, you can forget all about the loss of the Google Assistant reminder feature, by exploring your "Priority" home page instead.
The Priority homepage on Google Drive surfaces your most relevant documents and personalized workspaces. This could help to remind you of what you need to work on by keeping your most relevant documents and tools close-to-hand. The Priority homepage feature has already had beta and enterprise launches this year, but now it's going to be available for all G-Suite editions.
When you're logging in from the web, your "Priority" page will appear first in your navigation list, on top of your shared drives and files. However, you need to manually set the page as your default home page if you want to visit it first when you go to your Google G-Suite app. At the top of this section, you'll see a scrolling selection of items that you've recently received comments on, as well as documents that have been edited, shared, or updated.
Each item in your priority list shows up as a card with notes of what you need to do with those documents and a preview. Access to inline buttons means that you can quickly access sharing preferences or click through to the entire threat. The whole experience is far more immersive and speedier than the traditional G-Suite solution.
Introducing Google Workspaces
Workspaces are the other significant update to the G-Suite environment that may make you feel a little better about your lost reminders. Now that Google Drive can automatically group files together that you often open in tandem, the G-Suite can give you a more comprehensive workspace for your projects. Google uses machine learning to intelligently list all of the documents related to the files that you already have open. You can also right-click on files to add them to your workspace or create your unique groupings.
In March of this year, Google introduced this machine-learning feature in Beta form, adding it to G-Suite Business, Basic, and Enterprise additions. Now, Google is rolling this feature out to the other G-Suite editions, including Enterprise for Education, Education, and NonProfits - previously excluded in March. The full rollout will be on as default for all accounts.
Will these workplace and priority updates replace Assistant reminders? Possibly not, but they might be enough to show you that Google still has your productivity in mind as they work on whatever they're doing with the reminder feature.