Microsoft adds its famous Office on the cloud, with the main features ( Word, Excel and Power Point). One huge step forward for Microsoft which really needed after everyone is trying to knock that giant down. What smart about online Office is that they are using the exact same usual Office 2007/2010 interface, the upper bar with the usual buttons. In my opinion that what gives online Office the advantage, since millions are familiar with that interface and use it daily. And since people don’t really like to change -Sometimes- they would look for the familiar application and use it – Which is what I think Microsoft’s strategy all about –
Microsoft now started a battle with Google , since the later had their own version of Google Docs. An online web application for writing, editing and sharing documents and presentations. Google Docs added some new features few weeks ago when they added Draws and some interface enhancements. I personally use Google Docs, which I found very easy, simple and smart. But after having the new online Office, I might be one of the first people to switch.
Microsoft’s online Office is called ( Docs ! ) Yes, they called it docs !
It’s still a beta version yet working properly. Another smart move about it, that you can sign in using your Facebook account. Easy signing in, no registration and no forms to fill. You can share your docs too and see who is viewing or editing the docs as Facebook profiles.
These are simply the best things about the new Office Online.
Same Familiar Interface
It has the same usual known Microsoft Office interface, the upper sliding bar and the same buttons and features in the Editor View.
In other views, they have a familiar Facebook-like interface, same buttons and font.
Same Keyboard Shortcuts
They are using the famous shortcuts that we all use in Office. CTRL-B/I/U and other well known keyboard shortcuts.
Upload a Document
Just like Google Docs, online Office give you the ability to upload a document. Of course they only support Microsoft’s files ( .doc , .docx , .ppt , .pptx and Only .xlsx for Excel).
Facebook + Microsoft
You can login using your Facebook, so no forms or registration. And you can share your documents with friends on Facebook and add them as viewers or editors.
Post to Wall
Every document has a “wall” , another way of chatting or saying what you want to people who have access to that document. Can be used as a chatting wall , or observation and comments wall.
Open in Word
Now this is funny, I was using Google Chrome and I tried to test this feature and I got a message says
This browser and Office combination does not support direct editing of online documents. Instead, you may download the document, edit it in Microsoft Word, and upload back as a new version.
However this feature works on Internet Explorer 8, which I almost forgot that it exists. Maybe that’s one of the strategies to welcome IE9 and make more users switch to it.