Tag Archives: Beta

Trust rules for Google Drive are now available in open beta

What’s changing 

In 2021 we announced a closed beta for trust rules in Google Drive, which gives admins more control over how files can be shared, both within and outside of their organization. Beginning today, this feature will be available as an open beta for specific Google Workspace customers, which means you can use it without enrolling in a specific beta program. See below for more information regarding availability. 


With trust rules, admins can enforce policies that limit internal and external sharing. Specific rules can even be set for organizational units and groups, allowing a more granular approach than enforcing blanket policies on every user. 


Trust rules can be turned on in the Admin console — once enabled, it will replace “Sharing options” within the Google Drive portion of the Admin console. Your existing Drive sharing settings will automatically become trust rules – note that this will not change your existing sharing settings or security configurations. 


See below for more information and availability. 


Who’s impacted 

Admins and end users 


Why it’s important 

Previously, admins were only given broad control over sharing settings for Drive, which meant choosing between options such as: no external sharing or only sharing with trusted domains. 


By enabling the trust rules beta, admins now have more control over how files can be shared, both within and outside of their organization. For example, admins can limit what their frontline workers should have access to versus other parts of their organization. 


Getting started 

  • Admins: Eligible Admins can enable this feature in the Admin console by going to Rules > Turn on trust rules. Visit the Help Center to learn more about trust rules


  • End users: Your Admin’s trust rules will determine who you can share and collaborate with on Drive files. 

Rollout pace 


Availability 

  • Available to Google Workspace Enterprise Plus, Enterprise Standard, Education Plus, and Education Standard Customers 
  • Not available to Google Workspace Essentials, Business Starter, Business Standard, Business Plus, Enterprise Essentials, Education Fundamentals, Frontline, and Nonprofits, as well as G Suite Basic and Business customers 

Resources 

Final Android 13 Beta update, official release is next!

Posted by Maru Ahues Bouza, Director, Android Developer Relations

We’re just a few weeks away from the official release of Android 13! As we put the finishing touches on the next version of Android, today we’re bringing you Beta 4, a final update for your testing and development. Now is the time to make sure your apps are ready!

There’s a lot to explore in Android 13, from privacy features like the new notification permission and photo picker, to productivity features like themed app icons and per-app language support, as well as modern standards like HDR video, Bluetooth LE Audio, and MIDI 2.0 over USB. We’ve also extended the updates we made in 12L, giving you better tools to take advantage of tablet and large screen devices.

You can try Beta 4 today on your Pixel device by enrolling here for over-the-air updates. If you previously enrolled, you’ll automatically get today’s update. You can also get Android 13 Beta on select devices from several of our partners. Visit the Android 13 developer site for details.

Watch for more information on the official Android 13 release coming soon!

What’s in Beta 4?

Today’s update includes a release candidate build of Android 13 for Pixel devices and the Android Emulator. We reached Platform Stability at Beta 3, so all app-facing surfaces are final, including SDK and NDK APIs, app-facing system behaviors, and restrictions on non-SDK interfaces. With these and the latest fixes and optimizations, Beta 4 gives you everything you need to complete your testing.

Get your apps ready!

With the official Android 13 release just ahead, we’re asking all app and game developers to complete your final compatibility testing and publish your compatibility updates ahead of the final release. For SDK, library, tools, and game engine developers, it’s important to release your compatible updates as soon as possible -- your downstream app and game developers may be blocked until they receive your updates.

To test your app for compatibility, just install it on a device running Android 13 Beta 4 and work through the app flows, looking for any functional or UI issues. Review the Android 13 behavior changes for all apps to focus on areas where your app could be affected. Here are some of the top changes to test:

  • Runtime permission for notifications - Android 13 introduces a new runtime permission for sending notifications from an app. Make sure you understand how the new permission works, and plan on targeting Android 13 (API 33) as soon as possible. More here.
  • Clipboard preview - Make sure your app hides sensitive data in Android 13’s new clipboard preview, such as passwords or credit card information. More here.
  • JobScheduler prefetch - JobScheduler now tries to anticipate the next time your app will be launched and will run any associated prefetch jobs ahead of that time. If you use prefetch jobs, test that they are working as expected. More here.

Remember to test the libraries and SDKs in your app for compatibility. If you find any SDK issues, try updating to the latest version of the SDK or reaching out to the developer for help.

Once you’ve published the compatible version of your current app, you can start the process to update your app's targetSdkVersion. Review the behavior changes that apply when your app targets Android 13 and use the compatibility framework to help detect issues quickly.

Tablets and large-screens support

Android 13 builds on the tablet optimizations introduced in 12L, so as part of your testing, make sure your apps look their best on tablets and other large-screen devices. You can test large-screen features by setting up an Android emulator in Android Studio, or you can use a large screen device from our Android 13 Beta partners. Here are some areas to watch for:

  • Taskbar interaction - Check how your app responds when viewed with the new taskbar on large screens. Make sure your app's UI isn't cut off or blocked by the taskbar. More here.
  • Multi-window mode - Multi-window mode is now enabled by default for all apps, regardless of app configuration, so make sure the app handles split-screen appropriately. You can test by dragging and dropping your app into split-screen mode and adjusting the window size. More here.
  • Improved compatibility experience - if your app isn’t optimized for tablets yet, such as using a fixed orientation or not being resizable, check how your app responds to compatibility mode adjustments such as letterboxing. More here.
  • Media projection - If your app uses media projection, check how your app responds while playing back, streaming, or casting media on large screens. Be sure to account for device posture changes on foldable devices as well. More here.
  • Camera preview - For camera apps, check how your camera preview UI responds on large screens when your app is constrained to a portion of the screen in multi-window or split-screen mode. Also check how your app responds when a foldable device's posture changes. More here.

You can read more about the tablet features in Android 13 and what to test here.

Get started with Android 13

Today’s Beta 4 release has everything you need to test your app and try the Android 13 features. Just enroll your Pixel device to get the update over-the-air. To get started, set up the Android 13 SDK.

You can also test your app with Android 13 Beta on devices from several of our partners. Visit android.com/beta to see the full list of partners, with links to their sites for details on their supported devices and Beta builds, starting with Beta 1. Each partner will handle their own enrollments and support, and provide the Beta updates to you directly. For even broader testing, you can try Beta 4 on Android GSI images, and if you don’t have a device, you can test on the Android Emulator. For complete details on Android 13, visit the Android 13 developer site.

What’s next?

Watch for information on the official Android 13 launch coming in the weeks ahead! Until then, feel free to continue sharing your feedback through our hotlists for platform issues, app compatibility issues, and third-party SDK issues.

A huge thank you to our developer community for helping shape the Android 13 release! You’ve given us thousands of bug reports and shared insights that have helped us optimize APIs, improve features, fix significant bugs, and in general make the platform better for users and developers.

We’re looking forward to seeing your apps on Android 13!

Add shared drives to specific organizational units

What’s changing 

For select Google Workspace editions, admins can now place shared drives into sub organizational units (OUs). Doing so enables admins to configure sharing policies, data regions, access management, and more at a granular level. 


This feature is available now as an open beta, which means you can use the feature without opting-in to a specific program. 


Who’s impacted 

Admins and end users 


Why it matters 

Currently, all shared drives reside in the “root” OU. As such, all shared drives are subject to the same policies. This update gives admins the option to move shared drives to sub OUs within their organizations, such as Marketing or Legal, which allows for more control over the privacy and security of the shared drive's contents on a case-by-case basis. For example, admins can restrict sharing of a shared drive belonging to the legal department because it contains highly confidential information. Additionally, this also gives admins more flexibility over applying default sub OUs to newly-created shared drives, assuring each new shared drive subject to appropriate security policies. 


With this update admins will have greater control and more options to control how their data is accessed and shared on a case by case basis. 

Getting started 

  • Admins: Admins can assign shared drives to various OUs using the new “Organizational Unit” column found in Apps > Google Workspace > Drive and Docs > Manage Shared Drives. Visit the Help Center to learn more about shared drives and managing shared drive users and activity.





  • End users: There is no end user setting for this feature — the ability to access or share certain files contained in a shared drive will vary. Visit the Help Center to learn more about sharing files in Google Drive

Availability 

  • Available to Google Workspace Essentials, Business Standard, Business Plus, Enterprise Standard, Enterprise Plus, Education Fundamentals, Education Standard, Education Plus, the Teaching and Learning Upgrade, and Nonprofits customers 
  • Not available to Google Workspace Business Starter, Enterprise Essentials, Frontline, as well as legacy G Suite Basic and Business customers Not available to users with personal Google Accounts 

New beta for data loss prevention helps protect sensitive data when users upload files to external Google Forms

What’s changing 

Previously, users in organizational units (OUs) or groups with active Drive Data Loss Prevention (DLP) policies couldn’t respond to external forms with File Upload questions. 


Now, we’re launching a new beta that will allow users to respond to external forms that contain File Upload questions, while also helping to prevent the leak of sensitive and confidential information. This beta will apply your domain’s existing Drive DLP policies to files that your users submit to Google Forms, without creating new rules or updating any existing ones. 


Admins of eligible customers can express interest in the beta using this form




Who’s impacted 

Admins and end users 


Why it’s important 

With this launch, end users will be unblocked from responding to Google Forms with File Upload questions across domains. At the same time, DLP gives admins control over what their users can share, and prevents unintended exposure of sensitive information such as credit card numbers or personal identifiable information. 


Getting started 

  • Admins: 
    • Use this form to express interest in the beta. 
    • Once accepted into the beta, Drive DLP rules defined for your domain will be applied to files submitted to File Upload questions in Google Forms. 
    • If you are not using DLP for Drive, you can create DLP rules at the domain, OU, or group level in the Admin console under Security > Data protection. You can apply block, warn or audit actions, consistent with DLP for Drive.Visit the Help Center to learn more about turning data loss prevention in Google Forms on for your organization
  • End users: 
    • End users can respond to forms as usual, but can now respond to forms outside their domain, including forms that have File Upload questions. 
    • If a form violates Drive DLP rules for their domain, end users may see warnings or be blocked from submitting. 


Availability 

  • Available to Google Workspace Enterprise Standard, Enterprise Plus, Education Fundamentals, Education Standard and Education Plus customers 
  • Not available to Google Workspace Essentials, Business Starter, Business Standard, Business Plus, Enterprise Essentials, Frontline, and Nonprofits, as well as G Suite Basic and Business customers 


Resources 

Create more interactive assignments with practice sets for Google Classroom, launching in beta soon

What’s changing

We’re announcing a new tool for Google Classroom called practice sets, which enables educators to transform new and existing content into engaging and interactive assignments. With autograding built in, teachers can receive performance insights and snapshots into student progress and use those insights to help inform future lesson plans. 

If they get stuck and need support, students will see automated hints and video suggestions, along with real time feedback on their answers. Assignments can be completed with a variety of tools for annotation, such as a mouse, stylus, touchpad, or math keyboard depending on how students work best.

When available, the beta will be globally available (note: in English only) for Google Workspace for Education Plus and the Teaching and Learning Upgrade. Education leaders can use this form to express interest in the beta.


Who’s impacted

End users


Why you’d use it 

Every student learns in their own way, though practice and specific feedback helps us all learn more effectively. In large classes, it can be challenging for teachers to support their students' individual journeys. Based on feedback we heard from our users, we’re introducing practice sets for Google Classroom. 


Educators can easily transform their own teaching content into interactive assignments.  Students get real-time feedback as they complete practice sets, so they know whether they’re on the right track. When they’re struggling to solve a problem, they can get hints through visual explainers and videos. 


With practice sets, educators can more easily get insight into which concepts need more instruction time and who could use extra support, giving them quick performance insights to shape future lesson plans. Visit the Keyword Blog to learn more about practice sets.




Availability

  • When available, practice sets will be available to Google Workspace Education Plus (formerly G Suite Enterprise for Education) and the Teaching and Learning Upgrade customers
  • Not available to Google Workspace Essentials, Business Starter, Business Standard, Business Plus, Enterprise Essentials, Enterprise Standard, Enterprise Plus, Education Fundamentals, Frontline, and Nonprofits, as well as legacy G Suite Basic and Business customers

Resources


Use Directory Sync beta for fast and easy sync of users and groups

What’s changing 

We’re launching a beta for a new Directory Sync solution which can make it quicker and easier to synchronize your Active Directory user and group data with your Google Cloud directory. 


Directory Sync is an alternative to Google Cloud Directory Sync (GCDS). You might want to consider it if you want to sync Microsoft Active Directory LDAP data with your Google cloud directory using a completely cloud-based solution, without the need to manage on-prem hardware and deployments. Please read more about its features and network requirements to learn whether it's right for you. 

Who’s impacted 

Admins 

Why you’d use it 

The new Directory Sync solution is: 
  • Cloud based: The cloud-based sync process is auto-scheduled to run on a continuous basis in a loop, so there’s no need to install a sync client or on-premises software. 
  • Easy to use: A simple and modern UI integrated with the Admin console makes it easy to use for those with no LDAP knowledge. Plus, there’s no need for Google exclusion rules if you would like to sync from multiple Active Directory sources or manage a subset of users or groups within Google without synching from Active Directory. 
  • Integrated reporting: It offers centralized reporting in the Admin console. You can filter, search, and set custom alerts. 
  • Native multi-directory support: You can sync users and groups from more than one Active Directory source. 

The initial scope for the Directory Sync beta supports user and group sync with Active Directory only, and covers a limited range of attributes. In the future, we’ll add other features, including support for additional attributes, OU mapping to automatically place new user accounts in OUs, and more types of data. 


Additional details 

If your Active Directory server is located on-premises or hosted outside a Google Cloud environment, you’ll require a connection between Google Cloud and the LDAP server using Cloud VPN or Cloud Interconnect. Learn more about system requirements for using Directory Sync and supported network connections for Directory Sync


Getting started 

  • Admins: To use the Directory Sync beta, go to Admin console > Home > Directory > Directory Sync. No beta sign up or registration is required. You can delegate the ability to manage Active Directory with the new Directory Sync admin user role. Use our Help Center to learn more about using the new Directory Sync, and see FAQs about Directory Sync. 
  • End users: No end user impact 

Rollout pace 


Availability 

  • Available to all Google Workspace customers, as well as G Suite Basic and Business customers and Cloud Identity customers 

Resources 

Google Forms API now available in open beta

What’s changing 

At Google Cloud Next 2021, we announced the Google Forms API Beta, which provides programmatic access for managing Google Forms and acting on responses— empowering developers to build powerful integrations on top of Forms. 

The Google Forms API is now rolling out as an Open Beta which means developers who are part of our Early Adopter Program can make their integrations available to the public. We’ll no longer require individual end-user accounts to be allowlisted. Developers should keep in mind, however, that their integrations are in Beta. 

Developers can apply to join our Early Adopter Program and begin developing using the Google Forms API by filling out this form

See below for more information. 

Who’s impacted 

Admins and developers 

Why you’d use it 

The Google Forms API provides programmatic access to manage Forms and receive responses, supporting the development of a variety of powerful integrations. For example, the API could be utilized to develop real-time dashboards or data visualizations, trigger business workflows incorporating project management, CRM, or LMS tools, or auto-generate forms from question banks or other data sets. 

The API is useful for a variety of tasks such as: 

  • Creating and modifying forms or quizzes 
  • Retrieving form responses or quiz grades 
  • Reading form content and metadata 
  • Receiving push notifications for form or quiz responses and updates 



Getting started 

Rollout pace 

Integration availability for end users 

Availability 

Resources 

Google Workspace Client-side encryption beta expanded to include Google Meet and Google Drive for desktop

What’s changing 

Earlier this year, we announced the beta for Google Workspace Client-side encryption, specifically for Google Drive, Docs, Sheets, and Slides, with support for all file types in Drive including Office files, PDFs, and more. 

We’re now expanding the beta to include desktop data for Google Meet and Google Drive. Additionally, key access service APIs are now publicly available for anyone to use. 

Encryption notice in Meet

Encryption notice in Meet

Lastly, we are adding two new Key access service partners (Fortanix, Stormshield) for customers looking for a dedicated partner that integrates with the key access service APIs. Previously, we had announced key service partnerships with Flowcrypt, FutureX, Thales and Virtru

The beta is available to Google Workspace Enterprise Plus and Google Workspace Education Plus customers—eligible customers can now apply for the beta here. Important note: Customers who are already participating in the beta will have to reapply for access to the Google Meet and functionality, but you will be able to reuse your key service configuration. 

Who’s impacted 

Admins and developers 

Why it’s important 

Google Workspace already uses the latest cryptographic standards to encrypt all data at rest and in transit between our facilities. With Client-side encryption, we’re taking this a step further by giving customers direct control of encryption keys and the identity provider used to access those keys. This can help you strengthen the confidentiality of your data while helping to address a broad range of data sovereignty and compliance needs. 

When using Client-side encryption, customer data is indecipherable to Google. Customers can create a fundamentally stronger privacy posture to comply with regulations like ITAR and CJIS or simply to better protect the privacy of their confidential data 

Read our announcement post to learn more about this beta and our plans for Client-side encryption across Google Workspace. 

Additional details 

If you are looking to choose a key service access partner, Flowcrypt, Fortanix, Futurex, Stormshield, Thales, and Virtru have built tools in accordance with Google’s specifications and provide both key management and access control capabilities. Your partner of choice holds the key to decode encrypted Google Workspace files, and Google cannot access or decipher these files without this key. 

If you prefer to build or integrate your own in-house key services, we have published the key access service API specifications that can be used with Client-side encryption. 

Getting started 

Availability 

  • Available to Enterprise Plus and Education Plus customers 
  • Not available to Google Workspace Essentials, Business Starter, Business Standard, Business Plus, Enterprise Essentials, Enterprise Standard, Education Fundamentals, Frontline, and Nonprofits, as well as G Suite Basic and Business customers. 

Resources 

Refine search results in Google Drive with search chips, launching in beta

What’s changing

We’re launching a new beta for Google Drive that will help users refine their search and locate files faster using search chips. This is similar to functionality available in Gmail today. 



This beta will be available for all Google Workspace editions—eligible customers can use this form to express interest in the beta.


See below for more information.


Who’s impacted

Admins and end users


Why you’d use it 

When searching in Drive, users often use a few key words to try and locate the file they’re looking for, such as “marketing plan” or “sales report,” which may return results that are too broad. 


Now, after a query is entered, users can use search chips to surface more relevant results based on:

  • File type, such as a Google Doc, PDF, or image
  • People
  • Location, such as a shared drive or specific folder
  • When the document was last modified
  • File titles only
  • Shared drive labels
  • Tasks
We hope search chips in Drive make it easier to find relevant files faster, eliminating the need to perform multiple searches or sort through irrelevant results.


Getting started

  • Admins: Use this form to express interest in the beta. We’ll begin accepting domains into the program in the coming weeks.

  • End users: If accepted into the beta, search chips will be available by default to users in the Google group(s) provided at sign-up. Simply enter a search query and select one or multiple chips to further drill down results.

Availability

  • Available to all Google Workspace customers, as well as G Suite Basic and Business customers

Resources


Google Workspace Updates Weekly Recap – October 1, 2021

New updates 

Unless otherwise indicated, the features below are fully launched or in the process of rolling out (rollouts should take no more than 15 business days to complete), 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), and available to all Google Workspace and G Suite customers. 



New look and feel for Workspace Updates email subscriptions 
We’ve improved the look and feel of the emails you receive when you subscribe to Workspace Updates. 
  • The emails themselves will be sent from [email protected], so be sure to update any inbox filters or labels you may have and check your spam folders if you don't immediately see them. 
  • Emails for the Workspace Updates Blog in non-English markets will update to this new format in the coming weeks. 
  • If you have any feedback about these emails after September 29th, please feel back to let us know in the linked form
Available now | Available to all Google Workspace customers and users with personal Google Accounts. | Workspace Updates Blog Email Subscription Feedback 



Porting in Google Voice now available in Canada 
If your organization has existing phone numbers with another service provider, you can port (or move) those numbers to Google Voice in Canada. | Learn more.



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. 



Live translated captions in Google Meet available in beta 
Launching in beta, live translated captions help video call participants communicate better by translating a spoken language to captions in another language. | Learn more here and here. | Available to meetings organized by Google Workspace Business Plus, Enterprise Standard, Enterprise Plus, Education Plus, and Teaching & Learning Upgrade customers. | Apply to beta 



Add image watermarks in Google Docs 
You can now add image watermarks directly into Google Docs. This watermark image will repeat behind the text on every page of your document. | Learn more. 



Renaming “whitelisted domains” to “allowlisted domains” in the Admin console 
We’re updating instances of “whitelisted” in the Admin console to “allowlisted”. This change more accurately describes this action, as well as eliminates a non-inclusive term from our products. | Learn more.



Comment size increasing in Google Docs 
Comment width will intelligently scale based on your browser window to maximize the use of available screen space. | Learn more.



Replace your background with a video in Google Meet on Android 
In addition to replacing your Google Meet background with a static image on web and mobile, you can now replace your background with a video on Android. | Learn more. 



Quickly access Google Drive files in Chrome browser 
We’re adding a card onto the New Tab Page in your Chrome browser that will surface relevant files from your Google Drive, making it easier and more efficient to find the files you need. | Learn more.



View Alert Center notifications directly from the Admin console toolbar 
You can now quickly access Alert Center alerts from anywhere in the Admin console from the toolbar at top of the page. Selecting the new bell icon will surface the ten latest alerts, along with a brief description. | Learn more.



Use the “Slideshow” button in Google Slides 
We’re replacing what was previously the “Present” button in Slides to now say “Slideshow.” We hope this makes it clearer when you are beginning a slide show, and when you are sharing your screen in Meet. | Learn more. 



Review smart home devices used for work in your Admin console
Admins can now view and manage the smart displays and speakers that access work data in the Admin console, alongside other devices managed with Google endpoint management. | Learn more. 



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