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Google Sheets Formulas

How to Insert Current Time with NOW Function in Google Sheets

In this article, you will learn how to insert a current time in a cell automatically by using the NOW function in Google Sheets. The NOW formula shows the current date and time. For example, It is beneficial when you need to record time and date during the data collection process.

How to use the NOW formula in Google Sheets

  • Select a cell you want to show the date and time.

  • Type “=NOW()” or navigate to “Insert”“Function”“Date”“NOW”.

  • Done - You don’t need to input any argument for this formula.

How to insert the NOW function in Google Sheets

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Look at how you can use the formula practically. Assume you need to collect some data with its collection date and time. 

  • Insert the NOW function in a cell.

  • Prepare the table to organize the data, make cells for data input blank, and fill cells for date and time by the absolute reference to the cell containing the NOW formula, as shown in the picture below.

  • When you collect data next time, once you input the data in cell B7, which is surrounded by green lines, you can make a date and time in cell C7, enclosed by red lines, a value by special paste functions (value only and format only)

How to use the NOW formula with an example


  • We used the default formatting of the NOW function, but you can change it by using the “Custom date and time” formatting. (“Format”“Number”“Custom date and time”)

  • If you don’t need time recording, you can use the TODAY function instead.

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