Over the years, Google has released dozens of products beyond the scope of its search engine. Some of these products we use every day, like Gmail, while others are out of order with only a fraction of the expected impact, like Google Plus.
While most of them know about Gmail, Maps, Docs and other great Google services, some have managed to hide from the radar. However, unlike Plus, some of them have proven to be quite useful and strongly oppose the competition.
In this article, we’ll take a look at seven little-known Google services to look out for and consider.
Google Keep is Google’s note-taking service, released back in 2013, with cross-platform compatibility across the web, Android, and iOS. Although the Notes app for iOS is also available via the web interface, downloading them to Android requires syncing through your Gmail account.
Google Keep‘s clearer cross-platform implementation makes it an ideal alternative, allowing users to take notes in the form of text, images, audio, and lists. Keep can also integrate directly with Gmail, making a single browser window extremely efficient for productivity.
For anyone who has been on the Internet since the 2000s, free web hosts like Geocities, Angelfire, and Tripod can be a fond memory. At the time, the Internet flourished thanks to free, non-commercial websites filled with information and media that were created and published by ordinary people.
Free web hosts are mostly a thing of the past, but Google sites are a gem that not many people talk about. The overall goal of Google Sites is that “anyone can create simple websites that support collaboration between different editors.” With Google Sites, users can publish template-based content or custom HTML online for free.
Google Alerts are the best way to track new results on the most popular search engine. Google Alerts monitors the search query selected by the user and as soon as it finds results – daily or weekly – it automatically sends an email to let the user know what was found.
For anyone who cares about managing their online brand or reputation, Google Alerts is an absolute must. Alerts have so many uses, some obvious and practical, and others unique and niche, and we’re surprised this service isn’t talked about anymore when it comes to the best Google services.
As a designer or web developer, Google Fonts are essential. Gone are the days when searching torrents or archives full of random fonts is gone now that Google has provided one of the cleanest and most comprehensive ways to view, sort, and download some of the best fonts and font families on the web.
Every font listed on Google Fonts comes with a quick preview, a set of preview styles, glyphs, an About page that explains the origin and creation of the font, and more.
It currently indexes 988 of the most used font families on the Internet and lets you download them with a few clicks.
Google Shopping is a great comparison tool. Shopping is Google’s way of tailoring its search engine specifically for physical products that are indexed in thousands of trusted online stores and listed in a shopper-friendly format that displays prices, reviews, and product details.
Sorting options in Google Shopping allow users to find the products they want by price and rating. They play well with similar deal finder websites and apps like SlickDeals and CamelCamelCamel Before you pull the trigger and buy this trendy new office toy, be sure to check Google Shopping to see if you can find cheaper prices.
Google Forms has always been an ugly duckling in the collection of Google documents, sheets, slides and forms. This set of web services competes directly with Microsoft Office and OpenOffice, where there is definitely no alternative to Forms.
However, Google Forms is one of the simplest survey administration web applications available. This is a great way to create interactive forms that allow you to enter text answers, select multiple options, and more. Questions in forms can be shuffled randomly, the number of responses can be limited to one per person, and much more.
It’s easy to set up and easy to get started with. For anyone looking to collect data from a group of people, Google Forms is a great option.
Simply put, Google Sky is for our sky, like Google Maps and Earth are for our planet. Sky is a product from Google that allows users to navigate the sky map showing stars, constellations, galaxies, planets and more.
Sky supports different views such as infrared, microwave and historical, offering the user different perspectives and possibilities while navigating freely. Users can click and drag to fly quickly, or even use the search box to enter the constellation names or coordinates they would like to view.
These seven Google services are not often talked about, but they make the Internet a much more useful and interesting place. If you have another Google favorite that you think is underrated, leave a comment below!