During its annual developer conference today, Google announced several new enterprise features that are coming to Android with its “L” update and a new “Android for Work” program. Thanks to a plethora of new APIs, the “L” version of Android will be able to seamlessly unify personal and business apps and data. Google claims that currently, many employees are required to carry two phones: one for work and one for personal use.
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With the “L” version of Android, you can now use one device for both of those use cases. Google says that while everything appears unified, there is still some underlying data separation to keep personal and business info is kept apart. The company says that no modification is required by developers for their current apps.
Google also announced that IT managers can do bulk purchases of apps for its workers and then mass deploy them to all of their devices. Google, in an interesting move, also thanked Samsung for its contribution to these features and its Knox platform.
Next, Google also unveiled many new features for Google Drive and its suite of apps. Google firstly mentored that all three of its Drive apps now support offline editing, although that happened a while back. Google’s suite of apps will also now be able to edit and save Microsoft office documents natively. Previously, you were forced to convert them to Google’s format if you wanted to edit them. Google is also rolling out a new “Suggest Edit” mode that does exactly what the name implies. When collaborating with other people, you can now “suggest” an edit to them and they can accept or reject it with one click. Google also announced a new Slides app for both Android and iOS. The app that is available on the Play Store now and will be available on iOS in the coming weeks.
Finally, the company announced a “Drive for Work” program that offers encryption in transit and on-server, enhanced admin controls, audit and activity APIs, and unlimited storage. Drive for Work will cost $10 per user/month.