Google updates some Apps functions

Some customers will get improved contacts administration tools and other new functions

Google made a few updates to various Apps services this week, including one that lets users within an organization share templates with each other.

Google already has a template gallery for Google Docs where people can share templates such as presentation designs and spreadsheets. But now, Premier and Education Edition Apps users can share templates privately, only with other people in their domain. Co-workers can sort, use and rate the templates.

Apps Gmail users have also gotten an improvement to the Contacts list search function. Now, when Apps users search in Contacts in Gmail, they'll also receive results from their company's entire global address list, in addition to people that they've added to the list and people they've previously e-mailed.

Google also released a user profile API (application programming interface) that lets administrators retrieve and update profile information for all users on the company domain. The tool is aimed at helping administrators maintain a detailed global address list in Google Apps. The API is only available to Google Apps Premier Edition users.

Other updates to Gmail for business users include new ways to organize labels, which users place on messages to tag them. Users can now hide labels they don't regularly use so that they appear in a "more" link rather than the main list. They can do that by dragging and dropping those labels into the "more" folder. Users can also now drag messages into a label and drag the label onto messages in order to tag them. The labels updates are available to all Gmail users.

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Nancy Gohring

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