Google has announced some changes to its Workspace suite of apps and services including availability for anybody who has a Google account. This means that all Google users can take advantage of productivity apps such as Chat, Calendar, Docs and more, to collaborate with others without having to pay for a subscription.
Gmail users, including those on free Google accounts, will be able to enable Google Chat and use it for direct messages or to create chat Rooms. Later this year, Google is planning to evolve Rooms into Spaces, a dedicated place to organize people, topics, and projects in Google Workspace.
In Spaces, there will be some new features like in-line topic threading, assigned tasks, more emoji reactions, user roles and moderation tools and discoverable spaces. Spaces will also seamlessly integrate with Calendar, Drive and Tasks allowing users to create and share docs, side-by-side discuss and edit, see status from calendar, run interactive polls, and integrate workflows directly with Bots.
The new Spaces experience will begin rolling out to both free and paid users of Chat in Gmail over the next several months.
Paid-for tiers with access to additional features such as custom business email and enhanced security will remain available.