Mountain View, California -- Although, search engine behemoth Google may already possess Documents and Drive at its disposal, but in a drastic move that could be designed to outsmart Microsoft in the office productivity app market, Google, on Tuesday announced that it had acquired Quickoffice, maker of productivity software for mobile devices that allows users to work on Microsoft Office documents on iOS and Android systems.
However, details of the acquisition were not made public by the companies.
Here is the full statement from Google:
We are thrilled to announce that we have acquired Quickoffice, a leader in office productivity solutions.
“Today, consumers, businesses and schools use Google Apps to accomplish work from anywhere, with anyone and on any device,” Google Engineering Director Alan Warren explained in a company blog. “Quickoffice has an established track record of performing seamless interoperability with popular file formats, and we will be working on bringing their powerful technology to our Apps product suite.”
Quickoffice, smoothly functions on Apple's iOS, Google's Android, and the Symbian mobile operating system, something that Google may be keen to leverage for Docs going forward. Quickoffice Pro already integrates with Google Docs, as well as many other online cloud services such as Box.net, Dropbox, and MobileMe.
Right now the Pro app does charge for such features, so we will have to wait and see if Google will begin offering the same functionality for free. Also, Google says it will continue to support the application while it works on “an even more seamless, intuitive and integrated experience.”
In a company blog post, Quickoffice Co-Founder and CEO Alan Masarek declared the acquisition would empower his company to open a new chapter in its development. “By incorporating the magic of Google's intuitive solutions with Quickoffice's powerful products, our shared vision for anytime, anywhere productivity can only grow.”
In fact, the main reason behind the acquisition seems to be Quickoffice's ability to effortlessly convert between many different office file formats. Google say that Quickoffice features will be rolled into Apps in the future.
Here is how Quickoffice describes itself:
This all-in-one, cross platform solution, empowers you to search, access, edit and sync your files across multiple devices, computers and clouds.
The company creates native apps for iPhone, iPad and Android and Symbian, so its safe to say that Google's suite of products will now become native products on your mobile phone:
Google is determined to push its online office applications into universities, government organizations, corporations, and small businesses--diligently striving to unseat the reigning king of the market: Microsoft.
Anyway, the search titan still has a long way to go to firmly compete with Microsoft, which is beginning to move its tools onto web in an effort to maintain its market dominance. Google says that over 4,000 companies now used its Google Apps suite, and it continues to make headway.
Some of the products available from Quickoffice, such as Quickword, Quicksheet, and Quickpoint, work across Android as well as iOS platforms although you would not be foolish to expect that the availability to the latter OS might be discontinued in the future. Also, its suite of apps each have a “Pro” counterpart that come with a cost, and it will be interesting to see if Google will still charge for them, or offer them as part of its Apps package for businesses.
Surprisingly, the timing of the Quickoffice acquisition is intriguing, and comes at a time when Google is preparing to transfer all files saved with Google Docs, which has been the company's cloud-based office software, over to Google Drive.
As the mobile space is getting red hot right now and picking up Quickoffice indicates that Google is not letting its efforts to establish itself as a provider of office productivity software go by the wayside and, more, that it looks to capitalize on the growing market of mobile accessibility.