Google updates Forms with intelligent response validation, cross-domain uploads and more

Google today announced an update to Forms, its service for building online surveys to collect information. Now, no matter whether you are trying to figure out who will actually want to come to your team-building event at the local ropes course or what your customers think about your latest product, Forms will be a bit more useful.

Among the new features is an intelligent response validation that will automatically suggest the right kind of response validation for your various fields. If you are asking for an email address, for example, Forms will suggest to choose the aptly named “Accept emails only” option. The same goes for URLs, age and similar fields.

Forms users will now also be able to solicit file uploads from users outside of their company — but only if both your company and your respondent’s company allow cross-domain file sharing in Google Drive. Uploads to new forms are now capped at 1GB, which is probably enough for most use cases, but users can also increase this limit to 1TB (which is also the cap for existing forms).

Google also is introducing a new question type: the checkbox grid. This allows respondents to pick from multiple options in a table. That’s great if you want to find a good meeting time, for example, which is, after all, a problem that even all of our advances in machine learning haven’t been able to solve.

Also new in Forms are settings which you can apply to all of your new forms. With this, you can choose to always collect email addresses, for example. Users can now also reorder their sections with just a few clicks.

These new features are now available in the Rapid Release channel and will come to all users in two weeks.