New version of Google Calendar makes the most of the iPad's larger screen

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Better late than never. On Wednesday, Google launched a new version of Google Calendar, its popular web-based planner, for Apple’s iPad.

It’s basically like the Google Calendar app for iPhone, but optimized for the iPad’s larger screen. Bigger icons make dragging and dropping calendar appointments a little easier, and enlarged text simplifies the process of adding new appointments.

It’s a little more intuitive, too, than the built-in Calendar app for iOS — especially when it comes to syncing Google Calendars. Normally, syncing multiple Google Calendars requires supplying your Google Credentials to Apple’s Calendar settings, signing into your Google account, and checking the individual boxes beside the calendars you want to sync with your device. With the new Google Calendar for iOS, you only have to sign in once.

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Otherwise, the new Google Calendar for iPad boasts all of Calendar’s existing features. One of those is Smart Scheduling, which suggests meeting times and available rooms based on participant’s availability and room preferences. Goals, meanwhile, intelligently schedules goals that you want to achieve in the upcoming weeks and months — if you set a goal to go running at 6:30 a.m. every other morning but don’t actually start running until 7:15 a.m., Google will reschedule future events automatically.

The new Calendar app is built into iOS Spotlight search — you can search for appointments and meetings from the iPad’s home screen. And it ships with a new Today View Widget that shows upcoming events in Notification Center (and in the future, on the lock screen).

The release of Calendar for iPad comes on the heels of fitness app integration. In January, Google linked Apple’s Health app and Google’s own Fit to Google Calendar. Fitness goals you’ve scheduled in either show up in Google Calendar, and once you accomplish them, marks the events as done.

In April, Google Calendar gained support for reminders on desktop. When you set a reminder with apps like Inbox by Gmail, Google Keep, Google Now, and through the Google Calendar app, it will sync with the web client. Unlike calendar entries, reminders are present until they’re complete, and appear at the top of your calendar each day.


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