Native Office Editing
In the battle for the enterprise market, Google today launched a fairly big gun. The Microsoft Office suite, is, it’s fair to say fairly ubiquitous across corporate IT culture around the world, but Google is trying to change that, but to make it easy, they’ve added native MS Office editing to Google Docs.

After they acquired the Office Editing software Quick Office back in 2012, Google has quietly incorporated its functions into many of their products and services. Even now you can get offline editing of Office Docs on ChromeOS, but now they’re taking it to the cloud. When you receive MS Office documents in an email, no longer will Drive auto-convert the document to a Google Doc, it will let you work on the native document, it will also allow you to save the document back to the MS Office file format when you’re done.

Of course, Google wants you using Google Docs, so you can still up-convert the files to a Google Docs format at any time you want.

Collaborative features for Google Docs also get a boost today, with the introduction of ‘Redlining’. It’s a “suggested edits” tool, which allows you to post suggestions right into the document for collaborators to consider.


Part of accessing documents in Drive is apps. Google introduced Docs and Sheets apps for Android and iOS a few weeks back, advising that a ‘Slides’ app was on the way soon. Well, the day is here and Slides is now available in Google Play (iOS version coming soon). With Slides for Android, you can now create and edit presentations directly from your Android phone or tablet.

Google Slides
Google Slides
Developer: Google LLC
Price: Free

Drive is growing. There are now 190 Million users on there within the last 30 days, that’s active users, not just a number of users with accounts. This has grown 85% in the last year alone. Google announced that 67 of top 100 companies, have ‘Gone Google’ with 58% of the Fortune 500 taking this path, as well as 72% of universities, that’s some big adoption.

Drive For Work

Because Google Drive is gaining popularity, Google is adding features, introducing ‘Drive for Work’. Drive for work encrypts data in transit, as well as on the server. It also adds Enhanced Admin Controls and Audit and Activity APIs. Best of all, for companies looking for storage, Google now offers unlimited storage for $10 per user per month.

That’s a lot of features that Google is adding to a product that is still only relatively new. There will be a lot of companies interested in the native Office editing, but whether they can get word out to them that the feature exists is another matter.

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    Much better. This feature is long overdue.

    David Jones

    I have been using Google Drive since launch and Google Docs before that. I am also a user of Google Apps for Business. So it is probably no surprise that I have already signed up to Google Drive for Work (by upgrading Google Apps for Business Premium edition, as it only costs an extra $5 per month for the massive upgrade in storage). I’m now keen to test out the new MS Office capability functionality as that as has been a problem. I’d collaborate on building Documents on Google Drive / Docs and then manual convert them to MS Office… Read more »

    Daniel Narbett

    Do we know if it handles ‘advanced’ stuff like Styles in Word docs? In other mobile (and Mac) programs I’ve tried you open the doc, only change a couple of words and save, but then in Word it’s somehow screwed up styles, bullet format etc.

    Joshua Hill

    I never thought I’d use Google drive but recently while planning a holiday with friends I started using it. Now with MS office integration Microsoft’s one last bastion is under attack. Could be the beginning of the end for MS???

    P.S. if you want to share full quality photos with friends, not the crappy quality FB reduces your carefully prepared photos too, I recommend uploading them to folders in Google drive and inviting your friends 🙂