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Google Lets Enterprises Schedule Updates

Over the past year, Google has added more than 100 new features to its Google Apps Web-based suite of applications. Of course, because they are Web apps, new features are available to users in real-time -- or after they refresh their browsers.

For many enterprises, though, such changes are not always welcome. Recognizing that, Google is now offering two new ways for customers to take advantage of upgrades: scheduled release and rapid release.

"Customers on the Scheduled Release track gain access to new features on a regular, weekly release schedule following the initial release of those features," said Anna Mongayt, Google's manager of online sales and operations, in a blog post. "This delay allows time for administrators to familiarize themselves with new features using a test domain, educate support staff and communicate any changes to their users. New features will be released on the Scheduled Release track each Tuesday, with at least a one-week notice following the initial feature launch."

This will affect updates to Gmail, Contacts, Google Calendar, Google Docs and Google Sites effective immediately. Organizations that previously had "pre-release features" enabled in the Google Apps control panel will automatically be assigned to the Rapid Release track. If not, your shop will be assigned to the Scheduled Release track, she noted.

In conjunction with this new plan, Google has created a site that will allow users to determine what upgrades are coming and when. The site is now available. 

Posted by Jeffrey Schwartz on March 16, 2011


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