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Overleaf has updated its collaborative writing and publishing tool to offer enhanced collaboration and editing features. 

Bringing together the features of both the original Overleaf and ShareLaTeX tools into a single cloud-based platform, the new Overleaf has been designed to enable students and researchers at academic institutions, industrial laboratories, technology companies and publishers to benefit from a powerful centralized documentation process.

'Overleaf is now firmly established as a leading tool in both research and education, serving a community of over 2.9 million users worldwide, from high school students through to experienced researchers and writers. 

'Launching this new platform just over a year since Overleaf and ShareLaTeX joined forces is a testament to the immense work of the combined team, as well as to the valuable feedback on the beta version kindly shared by our users,' said John Hammersley, co-founder and CEO of Overleaf. 'And with over 200,000 people using the new platform straight away, it’s certainly been a busy September!'

Overleaf introduced a beta version of the new Overleaf in May 2018. During the summer, feedback on the new platform’s functionality was provided by users, which has driven further development leading up to this month’s launch.

Overleaf says the platform has been developed to offer a wide range of capabilities to support authors working both online and offline, including:

  • Real-time track changes and commenting – simplifying review, acceptance or rejection of text edits for faster and easier collaborative editing;
  • Private invitation, link sharing and chat functionality – facilitating new and more productive collaborations;
  • Auto-compiling and real-time preview – updating the PDF view so collaborators can focus on their writing;
  • Complementary Rich Text and LaTeX modes – flexing to a user’s preference for editing projects with/without working in the code;
  • Ability to import and sync external files (e.g. datasets, bibliographies) – integrating with resources from other projects or external sources;
  • Direct submission to journals and repositories – saving time and effort when submitting manuscripts;
  • Advanced reference search – facilitating simple search by author name, title, publisher, year or keyword for effortless and fast insertion of the correct citations; and
  • Automatic two-way Dropbox/Github sync – supporting seamless transition between working offline to working online with other collaborators.