Re: Do People I've Shared Files With Need Google Accounts to Access Them?1 Recommended Answer
In fact, I think that it is (or was) meant to be that private sharing could be done to any email address. However, the Google Docs+Drive team is all the time messing up their sharing arrangements and then things don't work the way that they are supposed to work according to the documentation.
According to the documentation  private sharing should work to any email account, no restriction to gmail-based accounts. If the documentation is wrong or out-of-date then probably a Google Docs+Drive staffer should say this on this forum, including on this conversation. The issue comes up many times.
 Share and collaborate - How to share
Anyone trying to access the document will have to sign in to their Google Account to verify that they have access to the file.
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