The process of sharing Google Drive documents with non-Google users was updated on October 7, 2013.
The new update allows Google Apps users to share documents and files a non-Google account. Initially the recipient of the document can open and access the document via a link in their email without logging into a Google account.
As soon as the file recipient creates a Google account or logs into an existing Google account, the sharing permissions of the document with change to allow on that Google account access to the file.
It appears that Google is trying to allow users to share documents with non-Google users while still retaining the security features that come along with having to be logged in to access a document.
It is also evident that Google is trying to get users to sign up for accounts but, after all, the initial Google service is free!
This is an innovative step in the way that documents are shared online between different file sharing services and it will be interesting to see how it evolves from here and what other services (such as Dropbox) implement in response to these changes made by Google.
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