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Google Cloud Next 2018: Gmail for Android Material Theme Previewed, Drive About to Hit 1 Billion Users

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Google Cloud Next 2018: Gmail for Android Material Theme Previewed, Drive About to Hit 1 Billion Users

Highlights

  • Google Drive is about to hit 1 billion users
  • G Suite now has Google Voice for enterprise calling
  • Google has a new secure login tool for businesses

Earlier this week, Google started hosting is Google Cloud Next 2018 conference. There have been several announcements in terms of technologies, tools, partnerships, and more. At the Google Cloud Next conference held in San Francisco, the firm's announcements touched upon several key themes. While there were announcements regarding Gmail, G Suite, and more, the technology giant also said that it is ready to add an eighth platform with over 1 billion users to its portfolio. It cloud service Drive is now joining the elite team of Gmail, Chrome, Maps, YouTube, Android, and Play Store.

At the Cloud Next 2018 event, Google showcased the upcoming Material Theme update for Gmail for Android. In line with the recent redesign, the Gmail app will receive regular desktop features such as quick attachments in Inbox view. As per the Gmail team, the update for the mobile app is not as big as the revamp for the Web version.

According to the design that Google showcased at the event, the Gmail app for Android will get a White theme and background. Similar to the Google Material Design, Gmail will no longer have the Red accents. Additionally, there is a new full-width search bar that comes with the navigation drawer and a profile avatar. At the event, Google mentioned that the information was "directorial" meaning it is a direction that the developers are moving towards, but that does not mean it is the final version that will be rolled out.

Notably, there are some features that will come as part of the update. Similar to Gmail's Web version the new Inbox view lists images, files, and other attachments. The latest update also adds density options that will help users decide how much detail is visible on the screen. Google also announced that some advanced search features will arrive for Gmail on the Web. It will simplify the interface with a bottom carousel that can suggest contacts, attachment types, and other filters.

At the event, Google also announced some upcoming features for Google Drive, the company's flagship file storage service. Google Drive is working on a new "Priority" view that features a Feed, as well as user-curated Workspaces. There is a Suggested option that features a ranked carousal of cards. Every card is a file that Google's machine learning models have personally selected for users based on a number of factors, with each featuring a button to take action. Google also mentioned a feature called 'Workspaces'. here users will be able to create groups and pin the specific files they want.

Unlike a folder, any file you have access to can be added, with Workspaces ultimately being 'location agnostic.' Among the 'intelligent' features, there is Drive suggesting "Suggested Workspaces" that would be useful to have immediate access to nearby places. Suggesting what files to pin here, Drive looks at the title, author, and topic.

Meanwhile, Google Drive is about to be used by 1 billion people worldwide. As per a report in TechCrunch, Google made the announcement at the Cloud Next Conference in San Francisco. However, the company has not revealed the exact date when it expects the milestone to be crossed. It will be Google's eight product surpassing the 1 billion mark, the other being Gmail, Chrome, Google Maps, YouTube, Android, and the Google Play Store.

Google popular G Suite service has announced a bunch of updates for their enterprise version during the Google Cloud Next 2018 summit in San Francisco. During the Cloud Next event, G Suite added Google Voice support, third-party integrations in Cloud Search, and a new Drive Enterprise app. Also, the enterprise version includes specific features like managing users, detailed reports, and setting up call routing functionality.

Google Voice is now available in Beta for the enterprise users. It is integrated with other G Suite apps like Hangout Meet and Google Calendar and more in voicemail transcription and spam filtering. The enterprise needs to sign up for the Early Adopter Program to try out Google Voice right now.

Meanwhile, Data Enterprise is G Suite's latest standalone offering for companies that want to use the company's file storage and document creation service without also switching to Gmail or Google Calendar.

Cloud Search on G Suite is adding integrations that index data from existing third-party apps and tools that might already be used by Google. Cloud Search can index content from those various services with built-in natural language processing.

Meanwhile, all G Suite accounts will be migrated to the new Gmail soon. Google has announced that from October 16, G Suite users will not be allowed to choose the new experience, and shortly thereafter, they will be automatically transitioned to it. Administrators will speed up the process by either granting users the ability to opt-in immediately or just opting in for them. However, in either case, they will still be able to opt out until October 16. This also indicates that Google can take a similar decision with the old Gmail as well.

Finally, Google is also rolling out a new form of secure login for enterprises and is calling context-aware access. The context-aware access lets system administrators for G Suite businesses put a set of parameters in place that can prevent malicious third parties from accessing information. These parameters could easily be based on a user's context, that is, physical address, IP address, the time of day, and other factors.

"People increasingly want access to their business-critical apps on the devices that make the most sense for how they work," writes Jennifer Lin, a product management director at Google Cloud, in a blog post. "However, traditional access management solutions often put security at odds with flexibility by imposing one-size-fits-all, coarse-grained controls that limit users."

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