Use add-ons

Users must install and authorize an add-on before they can open and use it. Since these steps are the first part of the add-on user experience, you should understand them before you start creating your own add-ons.

This documentation section describes how users can install, authorize, and start using Google Workspace Add-ons.

Install add-ons

Before you can use an add-on, you must install it. Once installed, the add-on becomes available in the Google Workspace host application it extends.

You can install published add-ons from the Google Workspace host application or from the Google Workspace Marketplace. Domain administrators can also install add-ons on behalf of their users from the Google Workspace Marketplace. You can also install unpublished add-ons you're developing so that you can test them. Before you can use an installed add-on for first time, you must authorize it.

For more details, see Publish add-ons.

Authorize add-ons

After installing an add-on, it becomes available in the Google Workspace host application it extends. The first time a user attempts to use the add-on the host application presents them with an authorization card or dialog. This card explains what the add-on needs permission to do for the user, such as accessing the content of the current Google Sheet. The user can then grant those permissions and allow the add-on to proceed. If the user denies the add-on authorization, they can't use add-on.

Editor Add-ons use an authorization model that differs from Google Workspace Add-ons. Because Editor Add-ons operate on Google Drive files, the editor authorization model defines various authorization modes that result when add-ons are used with individual files. When developing Editor Add-ons, it's important to understand the different modes and how an add-on moves between them.

For more details, see Authorization.

Start add-ons

Once you have installed and authorized an add-on, it is available for you to access and use in the host application it extends.

Google Workspace Add-ons present an icon representing the add-on in the host application's desktop or mobile UI; users can start or dismiss the add-on by clicking this icon.

Editor Add-ons usually present at least one menu option in the editor's add-ons menu that lets users start using the add-on.

For more details, see Starting add-ons.