Google is about to allow users of Workspace and G Suite users to eSign documents directly in Google Docs and Google Drive, and I'm jumping for joy. Google announced this feature would be available for Alpha Testers a month ago.
According to a report at Neowin, the updated feature is meant for business users who usually need to eSign multiple documents daily. Still, even the average user will enjoy this new ability that makes life easier.
Google first announced the new capability in June, stating " "natively integrating eSignature in Google Docs, so you can quickly execute agreements from the familiar interface of Docs without having to switch tabs or apps." I have often had to jump through hoops to sign documents, and now having the ability to do so quickly and easily within Google Docs is game-changing.
eSign docs in Google Drive and Docs
Google promises the new feature will be pretty secure as the new eSign feature will use Google's "secure-by-design" infrastructure, which comes with built-in protections to keep keep your documents and personal information safe while protecting your privacy.
Some of the included features will be an audit trail for users and the ability for multiple users to sign a document. Users can also sign and get signatures for PDF documents stored in Google Drive. Google also noted that the ability to sign documents will extend to non-Gmail, and Google Workspace users, which means you can send signature requests to parties that do not use Google Workspace, Docs, or Google Drive to sign.
The new feature is in beta, and Google Workspace admins must fill out a Google form to enroll your business or organization in the beta program. Google started rolling out the new feature to all users on August 8, and it should take about a week for it to be available to everyone.
Soon we will all be able to eSign documents within Google Docs, and I am so excited to start preparing docs this weekend that need to be signed.
Update! Improved drawing tool
RUmor has it Google is taking its signature imporvements very seriously and will also be adding improvements to the drawing tool within Google Docs to help fascilitate signing of documents. According to a Tweet from Assemble Debug, a leaker known for uncovering burined features, Google is working on improving the drawing tool within Docs to allow for signing within documents.
Google Docs may soon get the basic markup feature allowing you to add signatures and draw on docs directly while creating documents. Please correct me if I am wrong, the markup/drawing feature is available only in Web Version and is more advanced. #Google #Android pic.twitter.com/XcUdM6ep93August 15, 2023
As you can see in the images in the tweet, drawing within Docs will allow users to write directly on a document. Although no definitive information is available, it appears to be a less complicated version of the current drawing tool but far more effective and valuable.
Besides signing documents within Docs, the new feature will allow users to annotate and comment on documents with collaborators. Google seems to be working diligently to improve Google Docs and Workspace, but the focus is to create simplified features and tools that make collaborative work easier.
We will continue to update as more information comes to light.
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Mark has spent 20 years headlining comedy shows around the country and made appearances on ABC, MTV, Comedy Central, Howard Stern, Food Network, and Sirius XM Radio. He has written about every topic imaginable, from dating, family, politics, social issues, and tech. He wrote his first tech articles for the now-defunct Dads On Tech 10 years ago, and his passion for combining humor and tech has grown under the tutelage of the Laptop Mag team. His penchant for tearing things down and rebuilding them did not make Mark popular at home, however, when he got his hands on the legendary Commodore 64, his passion for all things tech deepened. These days, when he is not filming, editing footage, tinkering with cameras and laptops, or on stage, he can be found at his desk snacking, writing about everything tech, new jokes, or scripts he dreams of filming.