The switch from Holo to Material Design in Google's own software took years, even if the company had fewer apps to worry about updating back then. In contrast, the move to the new Google Material Theme look is swifter, with many of Google's apps already updated with the design and a few more still waiting their turn. Among the latter are Google's standalone apps for Docs, Sheets, and Slides, even if their parent Drive app has already had it for a few months. But now, Docs appears to be the first app among its brethren to get a taste of the new UI.
The new Google Docs sheds the blue title bar and follows the same all-white look we've become accustomed to in the past months — though there's no sign of a dark mode just yet. New outline iconography is there, including a four-color floating + button to create new documents. There's a colorful Google Docs logo in the middle of the top bar, and the sorting method has been moved down below that.
The new menu removes the relic of the Google+ profile background image, gets the new account picker with the option to move straight to your Google account management page. The templates page gets a white background instead of the grey one, though contrast with the thumbnails is almost non-existent.
The document editor page doesn't see many changes, aside from a bit more white in the formatting bar. As for the document info screen, you'll see no toggles for link sharing, offline status, or starring, but the options are still there. Oddly missing are the options to rename a document or share it with another Docs user, though they could have been moved around or integrated in other menus.
We've only received one tip about this interface rolling out to a user with version 1.19.232.05 of Google Docs (APK Mirror), and none of us here at Android Police could replicate it despite running the latest version. So this seems to be a very limited server-side test, and your best bet is to grab that version and cross your fingers hoping to be one of the lucky ones. For everyone else, this APK file won't do much beside give you the satisfaction of running the latest and greatest.
Google Docs' sister apps have received the same Material facelift for our tipster, Tycho. You can see what they look like in the screenshots below.
Updated designs rolling out widely
As reported by 9to5Google, the latest version (1.19.312.02) of Docs, Sheets, and Slides brings the updated UI design to more users. If you wonder why all of these apps look practically identical and have no individual identity, you have the Google Material Theme to thank for that. Hopefully, it won't be too long before Google redesigns these apps again.
Head to the Play Store to ensure you have these latest versions, or alternatively download them from APK Mirror below:
- Tycho Regter