Earlier this week we caught word that some Chromebooks with Play Store access were being blocked from downloading Microsoft’s Office apps, specifically on the ASUS Flip. Obviously, this caused some controversy among Chrome OS fans. Thankfully, it seems Microsoft isn’t doing that after all…
One of the big advantages of the Google Play Store on Chrome OS is the hundreds of thousands of extra apps that it brings to the OS. Among those apps is Microsoft’s Office suite. Office has long been a downside for many users for Chromebooks, but this addition takes that cause for concern away, or at least it did…
Google has a new plugin out for Microsoft Office (Windows only, for now) which makes it possible to access files stored in Drive from Office and save edits back to the cloud storage service, as well as create new files in Office and save them directly to Drive. The plugin works with Word, Excel, and Powerpoint (2007, 2010, and 2013 versions), and Office 365.
Here’s what saving a new document looks like in Word once the plugin is installed:
This plugin isn’t anything monumental, but Microsoft’s Office suite of productivity applications still has an undeniably significant hold on the corporate market. By making Drive more interoperable with the suite, Google can ease people into trying its cloud-based applications for getting work done, initially by pushing the benefit of Drive for sharing files with teams, and easily accessing files across devices. It’s a strategy Google’s competitors have claimed to use to gain a foothold in the corporate world – get enough average employees in a company using your product for some of their needs, and eventually IT will budge and consider switching over for everything. Google has a website up dedicated to the new plugin.
Spreadsheet warriors, your time has come – Microsoft’s Word, Powerpoint, and Excel productivity applications are now available for Android phones. Back in May, Microsoft launched a beta of the suite that anyone could try, and says that through these preview users the company managed to test the apps on over 1,900 different Android phone models in 83 countries.
These apps aren’t for creating documents, however, but rather for accessing and making quick edits to ones you’ve made from your tablet or desktop PC. Here are a few of the highlights from Microsoft’s announcement post:
On the go reviews and edits
Present spreadsheets from mobile
Quick access to my documents from OneDrive, Dropbox, Google Drive, and Box
Available in many worldwide app stores
Microsoft Word, Excel, and PowerPoint are each available as separate, free apps (extra features for Office 360 users, of course) in the Google Play Store as well as through the apps stores of Tencent, Baidu, Xiaomi, CMCC, and through the Samsung Galaxy Store worldwide.
Microsoft has made the preview version of its Android productivity suite available on Google Play for the first time. Previously the three applications were available to users who signed up for the preview through a Google+ group.
The new apps are packaged separately, and more fully-featured than the existing all-in-one Office Mobile software that’s been available for some time. Of course, this is still an unfinished product, so bear in mind that some issues are bound to arise.
In a post on the official Drive Google+ account, Google today announced that Gmail web users can now easily open and edit Microsoft Office attachments. Google previously introduced the ability to edit Office files in Drive, but today’s update makes the process considerably easier for Gmail users. Now when a user receives a Microsoft Office file in an attachment, they can simply click the “edit with Google Docs” pencil icon to instantly open and edit the file.
As noted by ZDNet, Microsoft seems to be considering putting the release of the Android version of its popular Office productivity suite ahead of the build for the company’s own Windows 8 operating system. Apparently the Windows version has been pushed back to 2015, while the Android variant is internally being planned for release by the end of 2014.
It certainly seems like an odd strategy to put your most popular software product on every competing mobile operating system before your own–image Apple releasing an Android version of its iWork suite before an Android version, or Google pushing out an iPhone app for a new product that has yet to launch on Android–but Microsoft’s “mobile-first” strategy dictates that the company simply push as much software to as many devices as it can without consideration for platform.
It’s a good plan for getting as much revenue as possible from Office, but it could also be seen as putting Microsoft’s own loyal users on the back burner to instead focus on those who use devices from the competition… and that’s probably not a great way to retain Windows users.
In addition to saving you time, the Chrome Office Viewer also protects you from malware delivered via Office files. Just like with web pages and PDFs, we’ve added a specialized sandbox to impede attackers who use compromised Office files to try to steal private information or monitor your activities.
A few notable apps either launched or announced headlining news today, so 9to5Google gathered the most noteworthy ones in a roundup below. Our sister website, 9to5Mac, publishes app roundups on a daily basis, and now we attempt to do the same here for the most important changes happening in the Google Play store. We will also continually update this list throughout the day, so keep checking back for more details.
1.Angry Birds Star Wars
The highly-anticipated (and much-teased) Angry Birds Star Wars is now available in Google Play (video atop). Developer Rovio has long been working with the recently Disney-acquired LucasArts to bulk its popular app lineup with a Star Wars-themed iteration of Angry Birds that brings new creative and play experiences to the franchise.
The latest Rovio title ditches the traditional exploding/flinging Angry Birds for a slew of new bird characters each wielding a unique weapon. The Han Solo bird, for instance, halts enemies with a three-shot space gun. The game also features iconic Star Wars locations, 80 immersive levels, “hours and hours” of gameplay, fresh mechanics, and new level-up capabilities for birds.
The Verge has learned through several sources close to Microsoft’s plans that the company will release Office versions for Android and iOS in early 2013.
Office Mobile will debut in the form of free apps that allow Android and iOS users to view Microsoft Office documents on the move. Like the existing SkyDrive and OneNote apps, Office Mobile will require a Microsoft account. On first launch, a Microsoft account will provide access to the basic viewing functionality in the apps. Word, PowerPoint, and Excel documents will all be supported, and edit functionality can be enabled with an Office 365 subscription.
Microsoft is slated to unveil its next iteration of Office today, and The Wall Street Journal’s Shira Ovide is prepping the announcement with some comparison data about the productivity suite and its direct cloud-based rival Google Apps.
According to the WSJ’s video above, Dominion Enterprises held a $2 million annual contract with Microsoft, but it recently decided to switch to Google Apps. The company now pays $200,000 for Google’s services.
Despite the loss, the Office sodtware remains a hugely successful product for Microsoft. It is one of the company’s most profitable goods, and it continues to maintain a stronghold in the desktop productivity market. Google Apps, on the other hand, is still in its infancy, but it is rapidly gaining steam and attention.
Today’s announcement from Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer will surely set the pace for the company’s future against the ever-growing Google Apps.
ChipWorks and iFixit are hardcore when it comes to breaking open our favorite devices to see what is inside. The two websites decided to take it up a notch today by joining forces to publish a live teardown of the non-LTE Samsung Galaxy SIII. ChipWorks looked at the—you guessed—chips, while iFixit focused on repair aspects.
Yep, that is Samsung’s Exynos 4412, 32 nm CMOS, 1.4 GHz quad core ARM processor.
“The Exynos is in a standard PoP (Package-on-Package) assembly with a Samsung LP DDR2 Green Memory K3PE7E700M-XGC2,” explained ChipWorks. “It is notable that this is the same process generation as we documented in the Apple A5 rev 2, APL2498, also fabricated by Samsung and for which you can see the general structure.”
The device also features the Sony IMX145 is an 8-megapixel, 1.4 um pixel pitch, back illuminated CMOS image sensor. Sony designs and manufactures this image sensor, which the Apple iPhone 4S also boasts. Samsung provides its own storage, however, with the KMVTU000LM. According to ChipWorks, it is a multi-chip Samsung MOVI N and memory module.
A few other chips worth mentioning:
-Wolfson WM1811AE Audio Codec
-Maxim Max77686 Power Management IC
-Maxim Max 77693 is a multifunctional device including PMIC, MUIC, flash LED control
-Audience 350B voice processor
-Silicon Image Inc 92240Bo RF Transmitter
-STMicroelectronics STD03 AMOLED Display Driver
There is currently an unlocked 16 GB Samsung Galaxy Nexus i9250 on eBay for $369.99.
It works on any GSM Carrier and sports Android 4.0, a 1.2 GHz dual-core processor, 5 MP camera, an 1850 mAh battery, a 4.65-inch HD Super AMOLED display, as well as 4G (LTE or HSPA+) connectivity. The deal expires soon, but it includes free shipping and an additional $63 two-year warranty. Furthermore, eBay promises it will arrive at your doorstep on June 7 if bought today.
According to the listing that just went live yesterday, 557 devices were already sold. This is a rare bargain, so hurry up and get one before this limited offer ends.
The Mountain View, Calif.-based Company’s Vice President of Engineering and Director of Product Management Linus Upson reminded the world about the launch of Google’s Chromebooks last year, and then he unveiled the new Chromebook and the industry’s first Chromebox.
“Like its predecessor, the newest Chromebook is a fast and portable laptop for everyday users. The Chromebox is a compact, powerful and versatile desktop perfect for the home or office,” explained Upson in the blog post.
Google partnered with Samsung to produce the Series 5 550 Chromebook starting at $449. It boasts a 12.1-inch 1,280-by-800 display, six hours of battery life, 4 GB RAM, built-in dual band Wi-Fi 802.11, an optional 3G modem, an HD camera, two USB 2.0 ports, a 4-in-1 memory card slot, and a DisplayPort compatible with HDMI, DVI, VGA.
Samsung manufactures the $329 Chromebox with similar specs as the Series 5 550, but it carries six USB 2.0 ports, a 2x DisplayPort, a DVI single link output, and Bluetooth 3.0 and Kensington key lock compatibly. However, it lacks the 3G modem option and HD camera.
Microsoft released the above Google-lambasting video on YouTube (ironically) yesterday to take aim at Google Apps and decry the Mountain View, Calif.-based advertising business of seedily selling productivity software “on the side.”
Microsoft takes a curious spin on “moonlighting” and calls its competition the “Googlighting stranger” while making many jabs at the search engine’s product. The mud-slinging does not stop at the end of the 2.15-minute video, however…
Listen, the recession has obviously helped Google Apps hit the ground running, but the number of high-profile organizations adopting the Google-hosted suite of productivity web apps is growing at an alarming rate (if you’re Microsoft, that is). Lately, Google has won over the #1 hotel chain and today we learn that The McClatchy Company, the country’s third-largest newspaper publisher, has made the switch.
“Historically, each newspaper has operated independently with on-premise software and their own various business operation departments and specifically IT. To date, our technology has been both destandardized and decentralized”, says Terry Geiger, director of corporate IT with The McClatchy Company. Blame that on Microsoft’s technology, he says…