How To Overtype In Google Docs Quickly and Easily!

Are you new to Google Docs? You should be aware that some features in Google Docs aren’t the same as in Microsoft Word. One of them is the overtyping mode. During the initial stages of using Google Docs, I wondered how to overtype in Google Docs, and now I’ve found a way. 

Select the text you wish to overtype on and then type the new text. Perhaps, you’d use the Insert key to toggle between inserting new characters vs. overwriting them. Google Docs has a different approach to it. 

To understand further how overtyping works in Google Docs, scroll further and read this article. 

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How To Overtype In Google Docs

If you’ve opened the document in Google Docs, it’s time to explore the overtyping option. Follow the steps below.

Overtyping a word in Google Docs
Overtyping a word in Google Docs
  • Hover the cursor over the text that needs to be overtyped. 
  • Ensure that the text is selected. 
  • Type the new text. 

You can see that the new text entirely replaces the old one. It’s easy but can appear weird if you’re a regular user of Microsoft Word. 

Sometimes, the transition can happen from Google Docs to Microsoft Word too. If you’re switching to Microsoft Word, you can overtype using the steps below. 

  • Position the cursor in the place where you wish to overtype.
  • Press the Insert key on your keyboard.
  • If it’s in Insert mode, it will add new text at the position. If you press the Insert key again, it will shift to Overwriting mode, and the existing text gets replaced with the new one. 

Note: Several keyboards in recent times share the same key for Insert and Print Screen. You should follow the steps below to let the overtype mode in Microsoft Word turn on. 

  • Go to File and select Options. 
  • Click Advanced in the Options dialog box. 
  • Click on the checkbox next to “use Insert key to control overtype”. 

From now on, the processor knows to distinguish controls. 

What Is Overtype Mode

Overtype mode is the feature of typing new text over existing text, which is a way to erase wrongly typed characters. It’s also an editing mode that can overtype numbers, letters, and more. 

Overtype mode is available in Google applications (Docs, Sheets) and Microsoft applications (Word, Excel). Perhaps, controls can vary between them.  

How To Overtype A Line In Google Docs

Overtyping a line in Google Docs is similar to overtyping words. Follow the steps below. 

Overtyping a line in Google Docs
Overtyping a line in Google Docs
  • Select the line that needs to be overtyped. 
  • Ensure that the line is highlighted. 
  • Type the new text, and it automatically replaces the existing text. 

Note: This works for tables and equations as well.

You can also use Replace function in Google Docs to overtype multiple instances of the same text. 

How To Overtype In Google Sheets

Overtyping in Google Sheets
Overtyping in Google Sheets

The best way to overtype content in Google Sheets is to select the cell and type in the new content. It automatically replaces the existing one if the entire cell is selected. Otherwise, the new text gets added at the cursor position. 

If you’d like to overtype several cells, you may have to select them and then begin typing. New text gets updated in the first cell. As soon as you press Enter, it progresses to the next cell, where you can overtype the new text. This approach continues until you’re done with the editing part. 

How To Overtype In Google Docs On Mac

The best way to overtype in Google Docs on Mac is to open the document, select the text, and then type the new text. It automatically replaces the current text. 

If you’re looking for an Insert function on Mac, there’s an equivalent – Fn + Enter\return. This can let you turn on the Insert mode. 

Final Thoughts

There’s always a learning curve when you transition from one application to the other. Overtyping can sound hard to spot and activate in Google Docs. However, when you understand the technique (as mentioned in this article), you can easily sail through! 

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