Chrome OS gets experimental Word and Excel editing

first_imgWell, would you look at that… Chrome OS can now edit Microsoft Office files all by itself! The stars have finally aligned and Chromebook users will soon be able to more than just view these documents whether they’re online or offline.It’s all been made possible by QuickOffice, which Google acquired back in the summer of 2012. With a capable Android productivity suite in its back pocket, the company began working on bringing the same experience to Chrome OS.Right now, QuickOffice editing is limited to the Chrome OS Dev channel. It’s also hidden behind a flag, so clearly Google doesn’t think it’s ready for widespread testing just yet. Still, if you want to take an early peek it only takes a few steps to enable.First, you’ll need to change your Chrome OS channel on chrome://help to Developer. If you don’t see the dropdown, click the more info link. You may then need to update, reboot, and log back in.After that, go to chrome://flags and find “office.” Hit enter until you’re on the “enable document editing” flag and click enable. One more reboot and you’re good to go.What can you expect from QuickOffice on Chrome OS? A very limited experience. While you can edit word documents, functionality is much closer to, say, pre-Windows 7 Wordpad than it is to Microsoft Word. There are no advanced formatting or proofreading tools yet. You’ve got two fonts to choose from and the basics: bold, italic, underline, justification, and bulleted or numbered lists.Spreadsheet editing is similarly limited. You can format to your heart’s content, but don’t expect to hack in any complex formulas or lookup fields.It’s good to see this functionality taking shape on Chrome OS, but I can’t help thinking that Chromebook Pixel owners would have liked their $1300 laptops to come with QuickOffice editing from day one. But hey, at least it’s coming soon now.last_img


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