Google’s ChomeOS and Chromebook laptops offer up an interesting option for many with aggressive pricing, capable hardware while embracing the cloud with web apps seems to be an approach that has kept people interested.
Now ChromeOS is growing up, heading off to work in the Office. The appearance of QuickOffice is filling a major feature gap for the OS. Till now the lack of support for Word and Excel documents, along with the lack of powerful office productivity application, has limited the adoption of ChomeOS, a situation that is soon to change.
The Word and Excel functionality were first spotted by Francois Beaufort in amongst the dev builds of the OS. The new found abilities provided by QuickOffice, a recent Google acquisition, should not only provide compatibility but also a fully fledged Office productivity app in its own right.. The application appears to be fairly complete but still has to make it through testing before being ready for release at the end of the year.
All operating systems are defined by the applications available to them, Chrome OS is no exception. Currently there is no perfect solution to working MS Office files within ChromeOS. The Chrome Office Viewer is available to allow users to view the desired Office documents. Google’s Drive and productivity apps can open Word and Excel documents but there are often formatting issues that require constant touch ups. Once completed the files can then be saved out to Office format for distribution, not a perfect solution by any means.
OpenOffice should allow a far better experience for those locked into the Microsoft file formats, as well instantly becoming the best all round office productivity app for ChromeOS.
After a slow start Chrome OS is certainly shaping up as a serious alternative to the current mainstream operating systems. The cloud aspects of ChromeOS seem interesting, though there are few compelling reasons to make the jump into the clouds with ChromeOS at the moment.
Reference: Google ChromeOS Play Store