Google Apps and G Suite
Google apps are software applications hosted on the servers of Google, still known mainly as the giant of the web-based search industry. These apps run entirely in your web browser or through mobile apps, making them readily available no matter what kind of computer or device you use. Individuals have always been able to access virtually all of the apps for free since the first app, Gmail, was unveiled in 2004, including ample free storage, through a free Google Account.
In 2007, after office productivity apps were added to the lineup and had sufficiently matured, Google offered managed accounts for business, government, and education, enabling use of Gmail for the company's e-mail domain; collaborative, uniform access to the productivity apps and file sharing for your entire company; and centralized control of user accounts and security settings.
Altogether, the software applications have been referred to colloquially as Google apps, while the centrally-managed accounts were known commercially as Google Apps.
In September 2016, the Google Apps accounts for organizations were rebranded as G Suite. For an individual with a free, individual Google Account, the set of all apps is still referred to as Google apps (note the lowercase).
Google offers many other products and services, such as advertising through their search engine and site analytics, Google Maps with live traffic, translation services, shopping comparisons and payment systems, blog hosting, online photo album management, the Google+ social media platform, remote printing through Google Cloud Print, the Google Play store, and YouTube, as well as the Chrome browser software for Windows and Mac computers, the Pixel mobile phone and tablet, the Android software platform for other mobile devices, and their own line of computers running a proprietary operating system (the Chromebook running ChromeOS). This article, however, focuses on Google business apps and accounts.
For even more about Google and G Suite:
- Google Accounts and G Suite Editions Reference Chart
- Learn about the Google Chromebook, a proprietary Google laptop designed with Google Apps in mind