Google Apps splits feature release schedules

Google Apps administrators can now choose to deploy new features on an ad-hoc or regularly scheduled basis
Written by Ben Woods, Contributor

Google is now allowing IT administrators to choose between a fast-track and a scheduled update process for new Google App features.

Google Apps release

Google Apps will have a dual-track release approach — fast-track releases and a scheduled weekly release. Credit: Google

The Rapid Release option gives enterprise users access to the newest features as soon as they have passed through quality-assurance testing, while the Scheduled Release track gives access to new Google Apps features on a scheduled weekly cycle.

With the Scheduled Release track option, administrators will be notified and given at least one week to test the new features and communicate any changes to other employees.

"We've heard from some customers with complex IT environments that they'd like more notice before new features are deployed to their users," Anna Mongayt from Google's Enterprise Operations team, wrote in a blog post on Tuesday.

Gmail, Contacts, Google Calendar, Google Docs and Google Sites are all now following this new release process, the company said. Organisations that already had 'pre-release features' enabled in the control panel are automatically placed on the accelerated release track. All other enterprise Google Apps users are now on a weekly release schedule.

Customers on the Rapid Release track may lose access to some features if they choose to switch to the Scheduled Release option, Google noted.

In order to help administrators keep track of new developments, Google also launched a new portal that provides an overview of updates across Google Apps, as well as providing training materials.

Get the latest technology news and analysis, blogs and reviews delivered directly to your inbox with ZDNet UK's newsletters.
Editorial standards