No, this headline is not some takeover or merger announcement, it’s the promise of a fairly new offering called Offisync.
The basic idea is to allow users to create files in familiar and already installed desktop apps from Microsoft Office and then share and collaborate more easily using the online version of Google Docs and Apps. Much of what Offisync does can be done without this integration as both systems do seem to play well together, but Offisync pretty fully integrates the two and makes using them together on a regular basis a snap.
For instance you can:
- Manage, create and delete Google docs folders right from within Office applications.
- Make changes through Office that apply instantly to your Google Docs version of each file.
- Find any document based on its content using the integrated Google search feature
- Communicate with your collaborators via emailright from within your shared document
The Offisync too, currently in beta, is PC only plugin download that installs a new menu bar into your Office 2003 or 2007 applications. (And of course the .NET 3.5 framework is required or will be installed if it doesn’t exist on your PC already)
To be fair, Microsoft has already created a great software and a service model for it’s desktop software found at Office Live Workspace that gives you tons of free file storage and document sharing. You can even sync contact, task, and event lists with Outlook, something that Offisync does not address..
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