Published: Fri, February 09, 2018
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Google Drive Lets Users Easily Comment On Microsoft Office Files

Google Drive Lets Users Easily Comment On Microsoft Office Files

This eliminates the need for buying for apps like Microsoft Office if you don't use them regularly but need to work on related files once in a blue moon.

Google users, rejoice: You can now collaborate directly on Microsoft Office files, PDFs, and images right from Google Drive, without having to convert them into Docs, Sheets, or Slides, according to a Wednesday blog post.

While this type of feature has obviously been available with Microsoft's own solution, with Google now offering this functionality, it removes one of the barriers to using Google Drive in an otherwise Microsoft environment. With this new update, users can comment, assign tasks or mention coworkers and they can reply even if they are not using G Suite.

However, the offer, which runs starting today through June 30, is not open to just anyone. For instance, a user can highlight a sentence in an Office Word document and attach a comment to it or do the same with a single cell in an Excel spreadsheet.

The improved interoperability with Microsoft and other environments is important in situations where project teams have to work with heterogeneous files and tools in order to get work done, the two Google engineers noted.

Google hoping to steal more enterprise customers from Microsoft Corp. with an update to its G Suite productivity platform that's created to make it more compatible with Office documents. The same plugin also lets users save incoming attachments to Drive from Outlook, Google said. Furthermore, you will now be able reply directly to comments within the same file preview with a new "Reply" button, allowing for quick corrections, notes or responses to collaborator comments.

The feature is rolling out on the web now, with Google expecting it to take up to 2 weeks to roll out fully.

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