Google launched a free version of its business-level Workspace office productivity service on Thursday that includes familiar tools such as Drive, Docs, Sheets, Slides and other apps.
The new version of Workspace, called Workspace Essentials Starter, is a free collaboration tool for teams that adds enhanced video and security capabilities to the traditional apps. This version was designed to be used with an already existing email address and offers the same amount of storage as the consumer version.
The launch of the Essentials Starter comes after Google's announcement in January that the company would make "legacy free" G Suite users start paying for its services on July 1. Now with Essentials Starter, users can sign up for free access using their work email.
The launch of Essentials Starter is Google's play to capture the enterprise by going after individual business users. "With Essentials Starter, we’re making it easy for employees to choose their own productivity tools and bring modern collaboration to work," wrote VP of Marketing Kelly Waldher in the announcement.
If Google can convince employees and teams to sign up for Workspace, it may be easier to get the rest of the enterprise on board, too.
Correction: This story was updated to correct the features that come with the Workspace Essentials Starter version.