Users of Google Docs, the online applications for word processing, spreadsheets, and presentations, now have a wide range of templates from which to choose.
Google on Thursday announced the templates, which were created by Google and a number of companies with experience in the business. They can be browsed and opened through a template gallery that currently has 294 to choose from.
Among the options: wedding planners, business cards, cover letters, screenplays with proper formatting, invoices, loan amortization schedulers, fantasy basketball standings predictor, wedding photo albums, and party invitations.
I personally was excited to see the Sudoku template, was initially disappointed that it looked broken, but then realized much of its interface, including a solution checker, is available through tabs at the bottom of the document. When can we get a Kakuro template?
Some templates, such as the group shared expense report, are explicitly designed to take advantage of the fact that Google Docs can be edited by multiple people, one of the natural advantages the technology has over PC-based editing.
Microsoft has long shipped many templates with its Office suite, and many companies and individuals offer their own online, but I see some interesting potential here for some good user-generated content. So far, though, I don't see any way for people to upload their own templates to the gallery.
Update 12:00 p.m. PDT: Google said user-generated templates will be an option later. "Eventually, we want to give everyone a way to submit templates so we can capture the broadest set of use cases and let the user-rated favorites bubble to the top. But we don't have a specific timeline to share at this time," the company said.