This is part of a regular series of Google Apps updates that we post every couple of weeks. Look for the label "Google Apps highlights" and subscribe to the series. - Ed.
The Google Apps team has had another productive couple of weeks. We released a number of helpful new features, and were happy to welcome new customers to the future of computing.
Upload any file to Google Docs
Last Tuesday, we began rolling out the ability for you to upload any type of file to Google Docs, not just documents, spreadsheets, presentations and PDFs. This lets you access and share anything up to 250MB from the cloud. You get 1GB of storage for uploaded files for free, and you can purchase additional storage for file uploads. (Additional storage plans are coming soon for schools and businesses, too.)
Google Apps Premier Edition customers can also use the Google Documents List Data API to programatically add files to Google Docs, and purchase third-party applications so employees can sync files between their computers and Google Docs.
Default https access for Gmail
In the past, you had the option to always use https encryption in Gmail to help protect your data as it travels between your browser and our servers. After evaluating the trade-offs between security and latency, as of last week https encryption is now the default in Gmail.
If you trust your network's security and want to disable always-on https for performance reasons, you can change your preferences in Gmail settings. Employees and students whose admins have not already defaulted their entire organizations to https will also see this option. The Gmail sign-in page will still always use https to help keep your password safe.
Who's gone Google?
Sanmina-SCI is a leading Electronics Manufacturing Services (EMS) provider to many industries including the communications, medical, defense and aerospace, industrial and renewable energy sectors. Sanmina-SCI rigorously evaluated and smoothly deployed Google Apps to their multi-lingual, global workforce of 15,000 employees. Not only did Sanmina-SCI achieve significant cost savings over upgrading their outdated Microsoft Exchange environment, deploying Google Apps has resulted in better customer service, streamlined business processes and increased flexibility.
We also witnessed a flurry of schools going Google after winter break. A very warm welcome to North Carolina State University, the Byron School District, Griffith University, Seattle Central Community College and Macquarie University!
If your school or business is ready to go Google too, take a look at our tips and best practices for deploying Google Apps.
We hope these updates help you get even more from Google Apps. For details and the latest news in this area, check out the Google Apps Blog.