It's exciting to see just how quickly technology is accelerating, but the pace of innovation poses a challenge for decision-makers in schools and businesses. It's tough for them to keep up with escalating expectations about how technology should empower everyone to do more. A 2007 Yankee Group study notes that about 50% of professionals say that they'd be more productive at work if they had access to the kinds of tools they use in their personal lives.

This is why we're launching Google Apps Team Edition. The idea is to provide instant access to collaboration tools so team members can be more productive. With Team Edition, co-workers and classmates have an easier way to share documents, spreadsheets, presentations and calendar information within work groups, using Google's applications. To get started, one team member just needs to sign up with their work or school email address. After confirming they belong to their company or school, he or she can invite other teammates who haven't joined yet and start collaborating. There’s no hardware, software or setup involved for users, and no burden on the IT department.

But organizations need a level of security and control that individuals might not consider. To this end, Team Edition provides options so people can share information just with other members of their organization, and not with outsiders. Also, by verifying ownership of the domain, IT admins can customize the experience for their users, including who should have access, which applications are available and much more. You can learn about all the administrative capabilities on the Google Apps site for administrators.

Here's a quick video overview of Team Edition.