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Google Workspace Updates

This official feed from the Google Workspace team provides essential information about new features and improvements for Google Workspace customers.
  1. What’s changing 

    Admins can now set client-side encryption (CSE) to be on by default on Android and iOS for: 
    • Newly drafted Gmail messages and replies 
    • Newly created Google Calendar events 
    • Newly uploaded Google Drive files

    Client-side encryption in Gmail


    Admins can now set client-side encryption as the default mode for users on both web and mobile that regularly handle sensitive data. This allows organizations the flexibility to meet their compliance and regulatory requirements and reduce the burden on change management programs. Each new email, event and uploaded file on mobile is automatically client-side encrypted with customer managed keys meaning the user is compliant with their org’s policy from the outset. For organizations with strict regulatory or sovereignty requirements, this can help them close compliance gaps by defaulting users to the preferred mode for handling sensitive data while on the go. 

    For more information, check out our original announcement.

    Getting started


    Rollout pace


    Availability

    • Google Workspace Assured Controls is available as an add-on to Google Workspace Enterprise Plus customers only. For more information, contact your Google account representative.

    Resources


  2. What’s changing

    This year, we announced Endpoint Education Upgrade, which adds enterprise endpoint management features to your Google Workspace for Education edition. Using endpoint management, admins can better manage and secure the phones and tablets used across their school directly from the Admin console.

    Note that advanced endpoint management features are already included with Google Workspace for Education Standard and Plus.

    Who’s impacted

    Admins


    Why you’d use it


    Using the Endpoint Education Upgrade, admins can configure a wide range of account and device management features, helping to make your organization's data more secure across your users' mobile devices, desktops, laptops, and other endpoints. For example, you can:
    • Control what Android & iOS app can be installed on a device, who can log into it (for domain owned devices), and where it can access your data.
    • Protect devices from loss or theft with admin rules for alerts, location tracking, access restrictions, and remote data wipes.
    • Manage company-owned devices or set up Android work profiles, so users can safely access your school account on the go.
    • Require stronger device passwords and more.
    Visit the Help Center for a complete list of endpoint management features.


    Getting started


    Rollout pace

    • The Endpoint Education Upgrade will be available for purchase through your current Google Workspace for Education reseller and select channel partners on February 29, 2024. If you do not currently have a Google Workspace for Education reseller, you can find one here.


    Availability

    • Endpoint Education Upgrade is available by user based license or device based license (coming soon) — it is not a domain wide license. You can purchase Endpoint Education Upgrade licenses through your current Google Workspace for Education reseller and select channel partners. 

    • If you have Education Fundamentals and wish to upgrade instead of purchasing individual Endpoint Education Upgrade licenses, you can easily upgrade to Education Standard or Education Plus.

    Resources

  3. What’s changing

    Earlier this year, we introduced cloud-encrypted 1:1 video calls between users in the same domain using the Meet mobile app. In the coming weeks, users from outside of your domain will be able to initiate 1:1 video calls with your users and vice versa. Admins will be able to pre-configure this functionality as on or off for their users with a new admin control. The timeline for this update is as follows:

    • Admin control for restricting external calls placed directly to a user via their email: Admins will begin seeing the new control beginning today. 
    • End user availability: The external calling feature will begin rolling out to end users beginning in April.

    Who’s impacted

    Admins and end users



    Why it matters

    1:1 cloud-encrypted video calling in the Meet mobile app makes it easier to connect with others by significantly reducing the need to create meeting links ahead of time. We’re expanding these 1:1 cloud-encrypted calls to allow users outside of your domain to initiate 1:1 calls, making it easier to connect with your external partners and stakeholders. However, to ensure external contact is appropriate, admins can turn this functionality on or off for their users.


    Getting started

      • By default, users can receive calls only from contacts and other users in the organization. You can use the new admin switch to enable calls from outside your domain at the OU level. Visit the Help Center to learn more about restricting who can call users in your organization with Google Meet.
        • Note: This setting affects only Google Meet calling, not legacy services (formerly known as Duo) or calling in Google Chat. This also does not affect the ability to join meetings. Visit the Help Center to learn more about turning Meet legacy calling on or off for your users. Note that If you have legacy calling enabled for your users, they will have access to features previously found in Duo (group calls, messages, moments, family mode, etc.) if they have not upgraded to the new Meet app. 

    • End users: 



    Rollout pace


    Availability

    • Available to all Google Workspace customers

  4. What’s changing

    We’re excited to announce a new feature, markups in Google Docs, which gives you more flexibility when providing feedback in a document. The new markups experience lets you add handwritten annotations to documents with a stylus or your finger when using an Android device. 

    Markups can be useful in numerous scenarios, such as: 
    • Colleagues giving each other handwritten feedback on diagrams, charts, reports or proposals. 
    • Educators giving students feedback on their essays, reports, short stories and more. 
    • A homeowner providing ideas or updates on construction plans from their contractor. 
    In order to add annotations, you must use an Android device. From there, you can: 
    • Enter the markups mode and annotate using pen or highlighter tools 
    • Hide/show markups 
    • Erase markups 
    • Insert suggested markups 
    Markups on Android


    On iOS devices, you can: 
    • View a document with markups 
    • Delete markups 
    • Hide/show markups 
    markups on iOS

    On desktop, you can: 
    • View a document with markups 
    • Delete markups 
    • Hide/show markups 


    Getting started 

    • Admins: There is no admin control for this feature. 
    • End users: To turn on markups, open a document > select the markups tool from the contextual toolbar > draw with your finger or stylus.Visit the Help Center to learn how to use drawings & markups.

    Rollout pace 


    Availability 

    • Available to all Google Workspace customers, Google Workspace Individual subscribers, and users with personal Google accounts 

    Resources:


  5. What’s changing

    The Groups Admin role can now be assigned for security groups or non-security groups. Previously, those with the Groups Admin role had access to all groups within an organization. This change gives administrators more granular delegation of group admin responsibilities, helping limit access to the most sensitive groups to only those who absolutely need it. 

    This feature is available in open beta, which means no additional sign-up is required to use the feature.

    Getting started

  6. What’s changing 

    Last year, we announced that all newly created spaces in Google Chat will be in-line threaded. This streamlined user experience enables you to reply to any message and create a separate discussion isolated from the main conversation. We also introduced several updates, such as home, mentions and starred messages to help you find what you need much faster in Chat.

    Today, we’re continuing our enhancements across Chat by improving the in-line threaded experience in spaces. With multiple threads across numerous spaces, we know it can be difficult to identify which unread threads are most relevant to you. In order to provide you with more context upfront, you will now see participant avatars for unread threads in the conversation view. Without having to click to open the thread side panel, it will now be much easier to decide which threads to read and reply to. 
    Web experience


    Who’s impacted 

    End users 


    Why you’d use it 

    Being able to see the participant avatars for unread threads makes it easier to identify whether a thread is relevant to you. 
    mobile experience



    Getting started 

    • Admins: There is no admin control for this feature. 
    • End users: This will be ON by default. Visit the Help Center to learn how to use Google Chat

    Rollout pace 

    Web: 
    Android:
    iOS:

    Availability 

    • Available to all Google Workspace customers, Google Workspace Individual subscribers, and users with personal Google accounts 

    Resources 
  7. What’s changing

    You can now import and convert sensitive Excel files into Google Sheets with client-side encryption. When collaborating with external and internal stakeholders, you may find yourself working across both Google Sheets and Microsoft Excel. This update keeps your work moving by layering interoperability on top of the privacy benefits of client-side encryption: users are in direct control of their encryption keys and the identity service that they choose to authenticate for those keys.


    This feature was previously announced in August 2023 as part of an open beta.

    Additional details 

    With this release: 
    • You can only import .xslx Excel file types. 
    • Additional Excel and tabular file types are not supported. 
    • During import, unsupported Excel features in Sheets will be ignored. 
    • The maximum file size is 100MB. 
    • The maximum number of cells that can be imported is 10 million. 

    Getting started

  8. 1 New update

    Unless otherwise indicated, the features below are available to all Google Workspace customers, and are fully launched or in the process of rolling out. Rollouts should take no more than 15 business days to complete if launching to both Rapid and Scheduled Release at the same time. If not, each stage of rollout should take no more than 15 business days to complete.



    New way to use smart canvas in Google Docs 
    We’re introducing a new feature in Google Docs that utilizes smart canvas to boost productivity and streamline your workflow. Starting this week, you will see suggestions for email autocomplete, followed by a people chip conversion option using the Tab key. | Rolling out to Rapid Release domains now; launch to Scheduled Release domains planned for March 7, 2024. | Available to all Google Workspace customers, Google Workspace Individual subscribers, and users with personal Google accounts. | Learn more about and inserting smart chips in your Google Doc
    email autocomplete, followed by a people chip conversion option using the Tab key


    Previous announcements

    The announcements below were published on the Workspace Updates blog earlier this week. Please refer to the original blog posts for complete details.


    Updates to the Google Workspace Marketplace 
    End users can now discover and install Google Chat apps from the Google Workspace Marketplace. Additionally, users can now open the Google Workspace Marketplace directly from within Chat. | Learn more about Workspace Marketplace and Chat apps. 

    Introducing Gemini for Google Workspace, plus more AI offerings to better meet your business needs 
    On February 8, we announced the next chapter of our Gemini era. As part of this change, starting today, the Duet AI for Google Workspace Enterprise add-on is now called Gemini Enterprise.We’re also introducing Gemini Business, which is available to new and existing Google Workspace customers (see the availability section below for more details). Gemini Business is a Workspace add-on subscription which provides a subset of the generative AI features available in Gemini Enterprise, subject to monthly usage limits. | Learn more about Gemini for Google Workspace. 

    Updated user interface for signing in to or signing up for your Google Account 
    We’re updating the look and feel of our sign-up and sign-in pages with a more modern look, which is in-line with the Material Design across our other products. You'll see the updated interface across web and mobile devices. | Learn more about the updated interface. 

    The Google Meet API is now generally available 
    In November 2023, we announced the availability of the Google Meet API through our Developer Preview Program. Beginning this week, the Google Meet API is generally available. | Learn more about the Google Meet API. 

    Check in to your meeting room directly from the Google Meet green room 
    One of the challenges of joining a virtual meeting from a conference room, is that the people in the room are identified by the name of the conference room rather than as individuals. Google Meet’s room check-in feature helps ensure everyone in the meeting can see your name and be aware of your presence. | Learn more about Google Meet’s room check-in.


    For a recap of announcements in the past six months, check out What’s new in Google Workspace (recent releases).  

  9. What’s changing 

    One of the challenges of joining a virtual meeting from a conference room, is that the people in the room are identified by the name of the conference room rather than as individuals. Google Meet’s room check-in feature helps ensure everyone in the meeting can see your name and be aware of your presence. If you’re using companion mode on the web, you can now check in to your meeting room directly from the green room. Then, when you enter the call, everyone will immediately see your name alongside the conference room you’re joining from. Previously, you were prompted to check in once you were on the call, which is still available if you did not check in from the green room.


    Checking in from the green room ensures that everyone in the meeting can see your name when you join

    Getting started


    Rollout pace


    Availability

    • Available to all Google Workspace customers with Meet Hardware devices

    Resources


  10. What’s changing 

    In November 2023, we announced the availability of the Google Meet API through our Developer Preview Program. Beginning today, the Google Meet API is generally available. You can use the Meet API to: 
    • Programmatically create and configure Meet calls 
    • Retrieve information about past meetings, such as the meeting times and attendees. 
    • Access meeting artifacts, such as transcripts and video recordings 
    • Subscribe to real time updates on meetings, such as when a participant joins or leaves 

    For more information, please reference our original announcement.


    Who's impacted

    Admins and developers


    Why you’d use it

    Integrating the Meet API in your product with the Google Meet API streamlines workflows and provides your product with Meet information that easily enhances your product offering. For example, partners such as Hubspot, Outreach, Salesforce, and Salesloft currently integrate the Meet API into their solutions to pull meeting recordings and artifacts into their conversational intelligence tools for analysis and sales coaching.



    Getting started