Editors note: Today’s guest blogger is Franck Hémont, Group Informatics Engineering & Development Director at Ipsen, who is leading the company’s project to deploy Google Apps. Ipsen (Euronext: IPN, ADR: IPSEY), is a global specialty-driven pharmaceutical company.
See what other organizations that have gone Google have to say.

IPSEN is a truly global company, with over 4,500 employees spread across almost 50 countries. We work collaboratively across borders and teams, and with a recently implemented restructure it has become even more important to allow the organisation to work together seamlessly.

It was these challenges we had in mind when we evaluated our messaging and collaboration tools earlier this year. When we met with Google, we were looking for a secure, efficient and innovative solution that would allow the IT organization to focus primarily on value creation and the business to more effectively work together.

We’ve been gradually migrating to Google Apps for Business since September this year, after a successful six-month pilot phase. It involved 180 users spread across divisions such as R&D, Purchasing, HR, Manufacturing and across numerous locations in Spain, China, France, United States and United Kingdom. The pilot has allowed us to evaluate how the solution will work in our organization, and how it will bring value to the company.

Revevol, a Google Apps implementation partner, assisted us for the deployment, both for the technical integration and change management.

We’ve been impressed by the sophistication of cloud computing and by the additional functionality Google Apps will bring to our business. The ability to collaborate within a 100% web environment will be invaluable, especially for our researchers spread over distant sites in France and the U.S.

With Google Apps, our employees will be able to access their working environment from anywhere, at any time and from any device, bringing major organizational benefits and allowing our teams to work more effectively together.

Posted by Immad Akhund, Co-Founder and CEO of HeyZap

Editor’s note: Today’s guest blogger is Immad Akhund, co-founder and CEO of HeyZap. HeyZap is a social network for mobile gamers and a platform for mobile and online games. See what other organizations that have gone Google have to say.

Games are our business, but our business is certainly not a game. We take running our business seriously, and a key part of this is our IT. From day one, we set up our email on Gmail and have since been running our business on Google Apps. For a company of 18, working efficiently and communicating fluidly is extremely important. When it was just three of us, we used our personal Gmail accounts for work. Then as the company scaled, it became difficult to separate work from our personal lives. We moved to Google Apps where all our work information could be neatly kept under one company domain.

As we grew, we needed the ability to share and work together on documents. Google Docs provides the infrastructure to create and share documents through the cloud. Even better, the collaboration features let us work on the same docs together in real-time from anywhere. Sometimes we have up to 10 people working on a doc, an ability which has enabled us to be much more productive in our work.

For our 10 engineers, Google Docs has also served another purpose. Instead of a wiki, they use Google Docs to store technical materials for others to use. They take advantage of labels and folders to sort the information by topic. Wikis can be hard to maintain, but with Google Docs, it’s easy to create new documents and edit content. Our sales staff has also used Google spreadsheets to manage a lot of our client information and data.

Google Apps has been a powerful tool to help grow our business. As we focus more of our attention on the mobile space, where we already have a very successful app with over two million installs, I’m sure it will continue to enable our business and allow us to keep working quickly and efficiently, whether we’re at the office or on the go.


As a creative writing student at UC Santa Cruz in the early 90s, when I needed to write a story I’d trek across campus over wooden bridges suspended among the age-old redwood trees, down windy paths (avoiding banana slugs), and up to the computer lab. I’d insert a 3.5-inch floppy into the Macintosh SE, make my edits, then listen to the words rip across the dot matrix printer. I’d then carry the pages to the writing workshop where teachers and fellow students would scribble their edits and comments, generally with a red pen. Then it was back to the lab for another re-write.

Despite the fact that nearly every student has a computer these days – saving countless trips to the central computer lab – the way student teams worked together didn’t really become much more efficient, collaborative and fun until UCSC first moved to Google Apps for students in March 2010. And now, starting this week, faculty and staff are also adopting Google Apps so it will be even easier to draft and share work, provide input and incorporate feedback in realtime. Having a common platform for communication and collaboration for all members of the UCSC community means everyone’s literally on the same page.

Many other schools have also recently migrated to Google Apps for their staff and faculty community including Wake Forest University, Barnard College, George Washington University, ESSEC Business School, San Jose State University and many more.

If you’re interested in a deeper look at how staff and faculty at schools like these are using Apps to do things such as build ePortfolios in Sites and track committee minutes in Docs, register here to join our upcoming webinar on Wednesday December 7th at 10am PST. And in the meantime check out our whitepaper to read more about common questions and concerns we’ve heard from schools migrating their faculty and staff communities.


(Cross-posted from the Official Gmail Blog and the Official Google Mobile Blog.)

Two weeks ago, we introduced our Gmail app for iOS. Unfortunately it contained a bug which broke notifications and displayed an error message, so we removed it from the App Store. We’ve fixed the bug and notifications are now working, and the app is back in the App Store. For an overview of what’s available in the Gmail app for your iPhone, iPad or iPod touch, check out this blog post.

In the short time the app was public we received a lot of helpful feedback and feature requests. This included requests for everything from bigger features like multiple account support to customizations like improved notifications and mobile specific signatures.

We’re just getting started with the Gmail app for iOS and will be iterating rapidly to bring you more features, including all the ones listed above plus many more. Based on your comments we have already improved our handling of image HTML messages - they are now sized to fit to the screen and you can pinch to zoom in.

To try out the Gmail app today, install it from App Store on any iOS 4+ device. Those who already have the Gmail app released Nov 2 must uninstall or log out of the old app prior to installing the new app.


Editors note: This is the final post in a series that explores the top ten reasons why customers trust Google with their business data. A complete top ten list can be found here.

It’s important for all businesses regardless of size or industry to assess the risk of potential data breaches and take steps to prevent them, especially in the area of information technology. The use of laptops, smartphones, tablets and other mobile devices is increasing as users demand anytime, anywhere access to email and documents. This can increase the risk of a data breach if you’re using traditional applications which store a local copy of the data on the device and the device gets lost or stolen.

Google Apps can help reduce the risk of a data breach by limiting the data that is stored on your devices. When you check email or work on a document in a browser with Google Apps, the data is stored in our data centers, not on your device. That means that if your device gets lost or stolen, there is lower overall risk of a data breach. Similarly, if you collaborate with others in Google Docs, you don’t need to send them a copy of the document. You can enable and disable access to the document with a simple set of sharing controls and your collaborators access it from their browser. The document does not need to be stored locally on their device for them to collaborate on it.

For those times when you want to access Google Apps but you don’t have an Internet connection, we recently released an offline capability for Gmail and for Google Docs. The offline capability does involve some local data storage on devices. The amount of stored data is likely to be smaller as only a limited amount of documents and email are synchronized to the device for offline access. If you decide that this local data storage poses a risk, you can easily disable offline access.

For additional security and data protection information, including a video tour of a Google data center, you can visit our Google Apps security page.


(Cross-posted on the Google App Engine Blog and the Google Code Blog.)

Rapidly crunching terabytes of big data can lead to better business decisions, but this has traditionally required tremendous IT investments. Imagine a large online retailer that wants to provide better product recommendations by analyzing website usage and purchase patterns from millions of website visits. Or consider a car manufacturer that wants to maximize its advertising impact by learning how its last global campaign performed across billions of multimedia impressions. Fortune 500 companies struggle to unlock the potential of data, so it’s no surprise that it’s been even harder for smaller businesses.

We developed Google BigQuery Service for large-scale internal data analytics. At Google I/O last year, we opened a preview of the service to a limited number of enterprises and developers. Today we're releasing some big improvements, and putting one of Google's most powerful data analysis systems into the hands of more companies of all sizes.
  • We’ve added a graphical user interface for analysts and developers to rapidly explore massive data through a web application.
  • We’ve made big improvements for customers accessing the service programmatically through the API. The new REST API lets you run multiple jobs in the background and manage tables and permissions with more granularity.
  • Whether you use the BigQuery web application or API, you can now write even more powerful queries with JOIN statements. This lets you run queries across multiple data tables, linked by data that tables have in common.
  • It’s also now easy to manage, secure, and share access to your data tables in BigQuery, and export query results to the desktop or to Google Cloud Storage.

Michael J. Franklin, Professor of Computer Science at UC Berkeley, remarked that BigQuery (internally known as Dremel) leverages “thousands of machines to process data at a scale that is simply jaw-dropping given the current state of the art.” We’re looking forward to helping businesses innovate faster by harnessing their own large data sets. BigQuery is available free of charge for now, and we’ll let customers know at least 30 days before the free period ends. We’re bringing on a new batch of pilot customers, so let us know if your business wants to test-drive BigQuery Service.


These days it’s commonplace for employees to bring personal mobile devices to work, expecting to get all kinds of business done on-the-go, and this can be both a blessing and a challenge to IT managers. The importance of keeping mobile devices and data secure is as essential as ever.

Starting today, comprehensive mobile device management is available at no extra charge to Google Apps for Business, Government and Education users. Organizations large and small can manage Android, iOS and Windows Mobile devices right from the Google Apps control panel, with no special hardware or software to manage.

In addition to our existing mobile management capabilities, IT administrators can now see a holistic overview of all mobile devices that are syncing with Google Apps, and revoke access to individual devices as needed.

Organizations can also now define mobile policies such as password requirements and roaming sync preferences on a granular basis by user group.

Also available today, administrators have the ability to gain insights into mobile productivity within their organizations, complete with trends and analytics.

Finally, we’re also updating the Google Apps Device Policy app for Android. The new version provides users with more transparency about information available to administrators, and includes support for Android 4.0, Ice Cream Sandwich. These new mobile management features will roll out for customers using the Next Generation Release version of the control panel starting today, and will be coming to the Current Release version in a matter of weeks. We invite you to explore our help center for more details.


Since we launched Google Apps for Business in 2007, we’ve been working hard to build a global support offering that’s responsive to the needs of our business customers. In the early days, our customers reached us mainly through email, and our 24 x 7 phone support was limited to critical issues.

To improve the experience of our customers, we now provide 24 x 7 phone support to small, medium, and large Google Apps for Business customers for all issues affecting the core services. Our customers may also receive support through our web-based support portal, online help forms, and online help center. All support cases are handled directly by trained Google Apps experts.

A support metric that we’re especially passionate about is customer satisfaction. We measure customer satisfaction by asking for feedback on a seven point scale at the time we close a support case. As measured on this scale, 80% of our business customers and 90% of our large business customers indicate that they’re more than satisfied with their support experience. While we’re proud of these ratings, we want to do even better. Our goal is to achieve an overall satisfaction rating of 95%.

One of our core values is delivering products that just work for our customers, so in addition to serving customers directly, our support team provides our product and engineering teams with input regarding the usability and quality of our products. This effort has led to SLA and uptime improvements, as well as enhancements such as unthreaded email and read receipts in Gmail, and a scheduled release process.

Brad Feld, Managing Director of Foundry Group recently said, “My firm has gone Google, but I encountered a problem with the Contacts feature. I reached out to Google Enterprise support and am very impressed with how they responded. They explained to me that they were working to address the issue, and when they were getting ready to roll out the solution, they circled back to tell me about it. Are they perfect? No, but they’re very good, and I certainly got a positive impression when I interacted with the support team. I’m confident that they know what they’re doing and that they’ll keep getting better.”

To all our Google Apps for Business customers, thank you for your feedback. We take your input very seriously, so please continue to let us know how we’re doing. If you need help, please don’t hesitate to contact Google Apps for Business support.


From large Government departments through to small local realty companies, geographic information can be extremely valuable to organizations. However, this useful information often ends up trapped in files or databases, inaccessible to the average employee or user. Many organizations make use of a geospatial tool that presents information in a geographical context.

Behind the scenes, it can be an expensive process to get to this stage because the data needs to be found and “geocoded.” Geocoding is the process of examining a piece of information containing geographic references and adding information about the map coordinates within the document. Once geocoded, a piece of data is available to be shown in a geospatial tool. To put it simply, it is the connection made between address information and map coordinates. This is often a manual process which can be expensive and time consuming.

For us, automating the search and geocoding process was the next logical step, so we developed a tool called GeoFind, which enables an end-user to easily find geospatially relevant data and show it on a map. GeoFind offers an on-the-fly geocoder combined with the Google Search Appliance (GSA) to locate and present information through Google Earth or Maps. The GSA can connect to multiple large document stores and securely crawl all of the content. GeoFind uses the GSA to process a search query and sends the results to the geocoding engine to look for geographic clues, such as addresses, city references, or landmarks. After it identifies the clue, GeoFind displays the search results via the Google Earth Globe or to Google Maps.

This is all done automatically without an administrator having to do manual data processing. For example: Imagine a police department wanting to make police reports accessible to the public on a map. The traditional approach would be to individually read and geocode the reports. Using GeoFind, it isn’t necessary to perform this expensive and time consuming data preparation. Instead, they can point their Google Search Appliance at the reports and have them immediately displayed on the map.

You can find out more about GeoFind at or contact me.


What’s the first thing you do when you wake up in the morning? Maybe check the news on your tablet, then send a couple of emails on your smartphone before jumping on a video call with a colleague. It’s all happening on the web, it’s changing the way we think about work, and it’s creating new opportunities for businesses of all shapes and sizes.

While this isn’t new, you’ve heard us talk about this before, we’re experiencing a fundamental shift in how businesses use the web to drive collaboration, innovation and growth. The role of the IT leader in business has never been more critical, and we can’t wait to welcome more than 350 CIOs from around the world to our annual cloud event: Atmosphere 2011, next Monday, November 14.

Representing the vision for this year’s speaker lineup are Steven Johnson, Jonathan Zittrain, and Vint Cerf, as well as CIOs from Ahold, Journal Communications, IHG and the state of Wyoming.

Everyone’s welcome to join us online as we’ll be sharing this event with our colleagues around the world, live. We’ll be broadcasting the event on YouTube from 0900 PST, 11/14 and posting news from the event on our new Google Enterprise page on Google+. We look forward to seeing you in the cloud.


One of the most rewarding aspects of my job is meeting with customers and learning how they’re using our products to change the way they work on the web. In this spirit, today I’m excited to introduce our official Google Enterprise page on Google+, the latest way for us to stay connected.

By adding +Google Enterprise to your Google+ circles, you’ll be able to read about our latest product features, hear directly from some of our customers, and share your thoughts with the community.

We’re really looking forward to hearing what you have to say. To join the conversation, mention +Google Enterprise in your post, or comment directly on our page.

Haven’t had a chance to turn on Google+ for your account yet? With last month’s announcement of Google+ for Apps, you can now enable Google+ for your organization.


Since we launched Chromebooks this summer, it’s been exciting to hear how students are using Chromebooks to collaborate and create in the classroom. In the spirit of letting our customers speak for themselves, we wanted to share stories from three of the newest schools using Chromebooks in their classrooms, libraries and to provide Internet access to students at home using built-in 3G.

Renaissance Charter School, Nevada - Management
The Renaissance Academy Charter School in Nevada virtually serves students from low-income families across 13 counties in the state. The Academy’s mission is to free students from perceived limitations on their performance, and to narrow the achievement gap through technology. Roy Harden, administrator, jumped at the opportunity to deploy Chromebooks to their 490 students and staff. “We promised our students and parents a protected environment for their computing needs, which the Chromebook - with forced proxy settings and content control - allows us to uphold. With 3G connectivity, the Chromebook also gives access to our students who typically do not have an Internet connection at home. We couldn’t ask for a better solution,” he said. The new features in the web-based administrator’s management panel will also help Harden better manage different age groups of students, teachers and staff, and these features will greatly improve his visibility into devices distributed across the state.

Prairie View Elementary School, Wisconsin - Engagement
The Oregon School District in Wisconsin has led the state in adoption of modern technologies in the classroom. As technology director and a former teacher himself, Jon Tanner understands how important it is to provide web access for all students while keeping costs low. This is why he decided to bring Chromebooks to 22 third graders at Prairie View Elementary School. Shannon Luehmann, the teacher whose class is using the Chromebooks, notes, "It was like Christmas morning in my class when I shared the news with the kids and let them open the Chromebooks. Some student reactions were, 'So, you're telling me this is mine to use all year?', and 'We are going to do some pretty cool things with these computers this year!'"

“Thinking long term, I would love to give every child the opportunity to take home a Chromebook and be connected,” Tanner said, “but we never had a product we felt we could do that with before.” Teachers and administrators have already noticed a big improvement in student engagement. Even with some of the biggest behavior challenges, students have used Chromebooks to “engage in the classroom, be more productive, and even be more positive.”

Students using Chromebooks in Shannon Luehmann’s third grade classroom at Prairie View Elementary School in Wisconsin

Montgomery School, Pennsylvania - Collaboration
Jared Hamilton, technology coordinator at Montgomery School, decided to start piloting 40 Chromebooks for middle schoolers at Montgomery School, an independent, co-educational day school in Pennsylvania. As he sees it, “Chromebooks are perfect for this age group because they spend most of their time on the web anyway.” The students gravitated toward Chromebooks from the start because they found that they could get more done in less time, and turning in assignments to their teachers was easier. “Once they start using the Chromebook, they don’t want to go back,” Hamilton said. Having Chromebooks in the classrooms has also improved collaboration and engagement; in particular the faculty noticed a difference in the school-wide “Make a Difference Project,” for which students work together to present ideas to their community about how to make the world better. As Jared explains, “big projects like that become so much easier with real-time revisions and collaboration.”

What can Chromebooks in the classroom do for your school? Learn more about Chromebooks for Education on our website.

You can also join us for the Chromebook Classroom webinar series, Wednesdays at 9AM PT/12PM ET. Register here.


Editors note: Over the last couple of years some of the world’s biggest and most prominent media organisations have moved to Google Apps. The Guardian, The Telegraph and News International in the UK, Agencia EFE in Spain, Berlingske and Borsen in Denmark, and many others. The latest is Trinity Mirror, and today’s guest blogger, Steve Walker, IT Director and Google Apps Product Manager at Trinity Mirror, has told us why.

Trinity Mirror Group publishes many leading UK titles including Daily Mirror, Sunday Mirror, People, Daily Record and Scottish Sunday Mail, as well as 240 regional newspapers.

We’re a company spread across 60 different locations and we recently decided to move all of our 6,500 employees to Google Apps. This decision was driven by a real desire to improve collaboration, innovation and to enhance productivity within the group. Google Apps was evaluated as a product suite that could help us do just that.

The move to Google Apps will free people from mundane daily administrative tasks, such as managing busy inboxes, merging document changes or keeping track of the latest versions of documents and sending around numerous attachments. It will be easier and quicker to schedule meetings, coordinate work and search to find the information they need. For the many journalists in the business who work on tight deadlines and need to find the latest and most relevant information at the drop of a hat, this should prove invaluable. Those employees that need to keep in touch with their email from outside the office will now be able to check their inboxes via their mobile devices or even their home laptops.

One of the triggers to consider Google Apps was the fact that our staff was already using the consumer version of Gmail and Google Calendar to help them work more efficiently. We expect the real-time, collaborative features of Google Apps to will enable us to make some real changes to the way we work, leading to a more productive workforce and helping us to become more profitable and innovative.

The migration to Google Apps will be finalized this month, and at the same time we’re planning to release a new intranet built in Google Sites. We’ll fully deploy Google Docs and Sites early next year. We anticipate this move will help our employees become more creative and innovative across the organisation and, in turn, will allow the IT department to focus on other business critical and strategic projects.

Posted by Darrell Benatar, Founder and CEO of UserTesting

Editor’s note: Today’s guest blogger is Darrell Benatar, founder and CEO of UserTesting. UserTesting provides fast and inexpensive website usability testing by giving website owners on-demand access to a large panel of users who will record their screen and voice as they use a specified website. See what other organizations that have gone Google have to say.

Everyone talks about how important usability testing is, but 99% of website owners have never done it. We started UserTesting three years ago to make it so fast and easy that no one would have an excuse not to do it. Traditional usability testing involves recruiting users, hiring a moderator, and renting a facility where users perform website tasks while being videotaped. Big companies can afford all this, but most small ones can’t. So at UserTesting, we assembled a nationwide base of articulate users who are available on-demand and who can quickly deliver valuable information and results.

We’ve seen amazing growth since 2008, and I consider Google’s technology an integral part of that success. We now have 15 employees, four of whom work offsite. IM, voice, and video chat, which are built right into Gmail, allow us to easily bridge that physical gap. I was an early adopter of Gmail and saw right away the benefits of cloud-based communication.

Throughout our business, we’ve made use of many of the other parts of Google Apps as well, including Google Docs and Google Tasks, which is also built into Gmail. Our intranet runs on Google Sites, and it allows us to embed Google Docs and Google Calendar items right into pages. Having everyone interact on a task spreadsheet streamlines the process and allows managers to keep track of projects. We even make use of canned responses to address standard emails from customers with questions. And now, we are actively using Google+ to share what’s going on in our office with each other.

I feel strongly that any business would benefit from cloud-based productivity tools. Since start-ups are inherently open to new ideas and don’t have to deal with legacy issues, it makes sense to hit the ground running with solutions that just make your business work and don’t require an IT department. Why Google Apps? Because I have confidence that Google will keep adding more and more features that will keep making our lives easier.


Just over a week ago we opened the doors of Google+ to Google Apps users, and today we’re welcoming the millions of organizations they’re a part of. Now your business, school or nonprofit can create its own corner on Google+ with Google+ Pages.

A Google+ page is your organization’s identity on Google+. Your business, school or nonprofit can post updates and news, send tailored messages to specific groups of people, and engage in conversations with customers and followers.

Circles allow you to group followers of your page into smaller audiences. This lets you share specific messages with specific groups. For example, you could create a circle containing your business’s loyalty program members or your university’s alumni so you can reach the right people with the right message.

Sometimes you might want to connect with your fans face-to-face. For example, if you run a bookstore, you may want to invite an author to talk about her latest novel, or a college athletic department could host a roundtable connecting athletes with fans. Hangouts make this easy, by letting you have high-quality multi-person video chats, with a single click. You can use Hangouts to get customer feedback, help solve problems or simply get to know people better, all in real time.

Google+ Badge
To help customers find your page and follow you, we have two buttons you can add to your website by visiting our Google+ badge configuration tool:
  • The Google+ icon is a small icon that directly links to your page.
  • In the coming days, we’re introducing the Google+ badge, which lets people add your page to their circles, without leaving your site.

We wanted to help you get your business, school or nonprofit on Google+ as soon as possible, so we’re opening the field trial for Google+ Pages to everyone today. Once you’ve enabled Google+ for your organization and created a personal profile, you can get started creating a Google+ page for your organization at


Apparently it’s not enough for The University of Texas at Austin to give its alumni degrees anymore; now, the University’s 450,000 graduates (and 50,000+ current students) are also getting free email addresses for life. As a Longhorn alum and member of the Texas Exes, I’m thrilled to have the privilege of announcing that my alma mater is now offering Google Apps for Education.


Driven by the desire for better communication and collaboration capabilities, the student body petitioned for an upgraded email system. The university used the state-mandated procurement process to make its selection as it assembled a task force consisting of representatives from across campus to evaluate possible vendor solutions. After thorough review by two subcommittees, we’re proud that Google emerged as the top choice.

The University of Texas at Austin joins more than 15 million other students, faculty and staff who are part of the Google Apps for Education family. We’re thrilled to work with the Longhorns to make their launch a big success.

And I personally can’t wait to start using my alumni account.


Editors note: Today’s guest blogger is Joe Kraus, the Chief Information Officer of the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum, which opened in 1993 as a result of legislation unanimously passed by the U.S. Congress. The Museum’s employees went live with Google Apps for Government this Tuesday.

A living memorial to the Holocaust, the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum inspires citizens and leaders worldwide to confront hatred, prevent genocide and promote human dignity. Federal support guarantees the Museum’s permanent place on the National Mall, and its far-reaching educational programs and global impact are made possible by the generosity of donors nationwide.

To fulfill this mission, the Museum employs technologies that promote online collaboration for its teaching programs and uses crowdsourcing to expand and make more accessible its collections relating to Holocaust survivors and victims. Our migration to Google Apps will enable closer collaboration with teachers, universities and institutions that are engaged in teaching the lessons of the Holocaust, preventing genocide and conducting research on Holocaust history.

This week, the Museum launched Google Apps for Government for our 500 staff and support personnel. We chose Google Apps because of its ease of use and extensive collaboration and sharing capabilities. Our educators in Holocaust programs will use Google Docs to support online development of lesson plans. Our researchers and scholars will use Google Apps to develop their material on Holocaust history and the lessons learned. The general public, youth groups and teachers will be able to easily register for our many programs using Google Forms. Our staff will use Google Sites to collaborate on the multitude of cross- departmental programs and projects that we run each year to advance Holocaust understanding.

Our transition to Google went very well. We conducted a three-month pilot with staff from across the Museum followed by a three-month transition period. Our final switchover was done overnight on October 31. The transition required a rigorous communications and training program, with about 70% of our staff participating in classroom and webinar training led by our project integrator, Onix Networking. One of the key aspects that enabled our smooth transition was the identification of “Google Guides,” people from across the Museum who volunteered to help their colleagues with the new Google Apps environment. Now that we are in the cloud we will be able to take full advantage of a dynamic ecosystem of new functionality that continues to provide our employees new and innovative ways of doing the important work of the Museum with very little additional support required from my IT team.

The Museum's Google Guides mark Tuesday’s switchover.

(Cross-posted from the Official Gmail Blog and the Official Google Mobile Blog.)

Update: 11/16/11 On 11/2 we launched a new Gmail app for iOS but after finding a bug removed the app from the App Store. Starting today, the Gmail app is now available again.

Waiting. Walking. Watching TV. Working out. Winding down. Waking up. We check email pretty much everywhere these days. And when we do, we want easy access to our important messages so we can respond quickly and get back to life -- or slinging birds at thieving green pigs.

With that in mind, we’ve created a new Gmail app for iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch. We’ve combined your favorite features from the Gmail mobile web app and iOS into one app so you can be more productive on the go. It’s designed to be fast, efficient and take full advantage of the touchscreen and notification capabilities of your device. And it’s one more reason to switch to Gmail.

We want to give you the information you need quickly, with minimal effort and distraction. So we’ve included some time-saving features:
  • Get alerted to new messages with push notifications and sounds
  • Find an email in seconds with search across your entire inbox
  • Autocomplete email addresses from your Gmail contacts or select from your device’s address book
  • Upload photos with a click using the new attachment button in compose view
  • On iPad, navigate your inbox and read your mail simultaneously with split view

Upload photos
Reply, move, label and more

Our inboxes overflow with dozens and even hundreds of messages a day—and this can be even more challenging on a smaller screen. The new Gmail app helps organize your mail so you don’t have to go wading through your inbox to find that key message from your boss or loved one:
  • Focus on your important messages first with Priority Inbox
  • Quickly scan countless emails on the same subject with threaded conversations
  • Organize your mail by archiving, labelling, starring, deleting and reporting spam

Threaded conversations on the iPad

We’ve also optimized the interface so you can perform common actions in Gmail with the lightest touch:
  • Pull down your inbox to rapidly refresh if you’re eager for new mail
  • Swipe right to view your labels without ever leaving your inbox
  • Swiftly scroll through dozens of emails just by sliding your finger

Pull down to refresh
Swipe right to view labels

We hope the Gmail app makes checking email on the go a little easier. It is available in the App Store today and works on all devices running iOS 4+. For more information, check out our help center.


(Cross-posted from the Official Google Blog)

I’m one of hundreds of University of Michigan alumni currently working at Google. So is this guy. I’m proud to have a degree from U-M—and that we made it to two Rose Bowls and one Final Four during my time there. But I’m even more proud that today we’re welcoming my alma mater to the Google Apps for Education family. By providing our cloud services to the entire university community, we’ll continue to build on the strong relationship that Google and the University of Michigan have had for many years. Many other alums—especially in our Ann Arbor office—are just as excited as I am:

Over a year ago, the University of Michigan (U-M) announced a new IT strategy known as NextGen Michigan, a plan to upgrade technology across the campus. Laura Patterson, U-M’s Chief Information Office, told us the switch to Google is just one of many projects that will make up U-M’s multi-year strategy for changing the approach to IT service and investing more heavily in technologies that will advance the university’s academic, teaching, research and clinical programs. She said: “Adopting Google Apps for Education will help support U-M’s leadership in teaching, learning and discovery, as well as improve collaboration across campus.”

As their first order of business, U-M kicked off a project to select a unified messaging and collaboration platform to help consolidate the more than 40 email and calendar tools which currently service about 90,000 students, faculty and staff. After a review process that included townhall meetings and a campus survey, the university’s IT steering committee overwhelmingly recommended Google Apps for Education as U-M’s preferred provider.

In addition to the suite of products in Google Apps for Education, U-M also plans to use APIs to build rich integration with existing campus services and encourage increased collaboration.

Hail to the Victors—The University of Michigan is going Google!