First there was the Microsoft add-on for H.264 on Chrome, and now, this – Google has taught “your old docs new tricks” with the Google Cloud Connect for Microsoft Office, enabling real-time collaboration of documents, spreadsheets, presentation just like Google Docs, except now, it is for Microsoft Word, Excel, and PowerPoint. It seems the best way for the giants to grow is now on top of each other...
Compatible with everything from Office 2003 to Office 2010, Google Cloud Connect is certainly a cheeky way of leveraging the best aspect (real-time web-based collaboration) of Google Docs, onto Microsoft’s comprehensive and powerful productivity suite.
Yes, you could always share documents and workspaces and workbooks over shared drives with MS Office, and do much more if your enterprise had upgraded to SharePoint 2010. Google Cloud Connect however offers a similar web-enabled framework service, at a tenth of the cost, and across all three software and versions.
An official post on the Google India blog announced the deed today, with Google Apps’ Product Manager, Shan Sinha stating “Google Apps collaboration is [now] ready for every employee.” It’s not out for Mac though, but support will hopefully be arriving soon, as stated on the blog:
Unfortunately due to the lack of support for open APIs on Microsoft Office for Mac, we are unable to make Google Cloud Connect available on Macs at this time. We look forward to when that time comes so we can provide this feature to our Mac customers as well.
[RELATED_ARTICLE]Calling it “multi-person, simultaneous editing,” the post enumerated the benefits of Google Cloud Connect’s “web-powered collaboration within traditional software.” Google is looking to leverage the service at those enterprises who use varying and aging versions of Microsoft Office, and offering everyone a global ‘90-Day Appsperience’ program to try and see for themselves at a nominal fee, before they purchase a $50 a year, per user license. The 90-Day Appsperience progrom will offer unlimited use of Google Apps collaboration, as well as hands-on support from the Google team.
Simultaneously, a new collaboration dashboard is being launched as well, to help companies measure the productivity of the new framework better. Google Cloud Connect, as well as the new dashboard, are available in English now, and will be available in more languages soon. Check out a short video, detailing the software and its capabilities, below: