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Google redesigns and simplifies sharing in Drive, Docs, Sheets, Slides

Google Drive and the G Suite family of productive apps often get small, iterative refreshes. The latest update today is more notable and sees a big redesign of the sharing UI that focuses on ease of use.

On the web, Google Drive, Docs, Sheets, Slides, and Forms are all getting a new sharing UI that makes it “easier to share files only with specific people without expanding access beyond what’s needed.”

The three key changes are focused on highlighting common tasks and avoiding unintended permission changes, as well as quickly noting who already has access to a file.

  • Separated, task-focused interface: The new sharing dialog highlights essential user tasks like sharing a file, changing permissions, and viewing file access. The redesign also visually separates sharing with people and groups from link sharing.
  • Quick “copy link” button: We’ve added a “copy link” button to make it easier to get the link without changing link permissions.
  • Easily see current access: The new interface more clearly shows who currently has access to the item, making it easier to quickly audit and change permissions.

Visually, Google now offers two distinct cards, with the bottom focused on frequent link-based sharing. There is an actual “Copy link” button in the corner that’s more distinguished than before.

The top “Share with people and groups” features the same field to enter people and email, but now shows who already has access using a full list. Beyond simplifying everything and now leveraging Material Theme icons, this redesign helps streamline sharing, while minimizing the possibility of data loss.

This redesign of sharing in Google Drive will begin rolling today, but full availability is not expected until over the next month. It’s available for both G Suite and Drive Enterprise customers, as well as personal Google Accounts.

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Avatar for Abner Li Abner Li

Editor-in-chief. Interested in the minutiae of Google and Alphabet. Tips/talk: