MICROSOFT'S online productivity suite Microsoft Office Online has appeared for Google's Chrome web browser for the first time.
A post on the Microsoft Office blog said, "[Microsoft] Office Online works great in all browsers, but for those of you who use Chrome, you can now add Word Online, Powerpoint Online and Onenote Online to your Chrome App launcher to create new Office documents online with a single click from your desktop. As easy as that. Excel Online will be coming to the web store shortly."
Microsoft Office Online, previously known as Microsoft Office Web Apps is the free version of cloud-based Microsoft Office 365 designed for basic and domestic use, without many of the more advanced packages and options offered by its sibling.
The INQUIRER visited the Chrome store and installed the apps, but on each occasion was told that there was a "compatibility issue" without further explanation. This appeared to be a false positive, because after ignoring the warning we were able to access the service without any problems. Essentially these apps are simply web bookmarks and there isn't a lot to go wrong.
Several new features have arrived along with Chrome support. Microsoft Excel now has support for Visual Basic (VBA) enabled content, while Microsoft Word incorporates simplified footnotes and automatic list detection and creation. Microsoft Powerpoint gains better text support that, Microsoft claims, is a more accurate representation of what you are typing, and Microsoft Onenote now includes support for printing.
Microsoft Office Online remains an important tool as the company battles for cloud productivity leverage against Google Drive, which recently slashed its storage prices, and by adding web apps to Chrome, Microsoft has brought the fight back to Google. µ