Google Acquires Quickoffice
July 5, 2012

Google Acquires Quickoffice

Enid Burns for — Your Universe Online

Google is bolstering its offerings in productivity and documents with the acquisition of Quickoffice.

Quickoffice will be integrated into Google Apps, the company's mobile offering that provides cloud-based access to documents, email and other services for businesses, students and other consumers.

Quickoffice was recognized by Google for its ability to enable "seamless interoperability with popular file formats," said Google Engineering Director Alan Warren, in a blog post on the official Google blog. "We'll be working on bringing their powerful technology to our Apps product suite."

Google Apps includes hosted Gmail, Calendar, Drive, Docs, Sites and Vault. Each service is there to do the heavy lifting for small businesses and groups such as setting up an email with a company domain and organizing projects to encourage collaboration.

Quickoffice builds primarily for mobile platforms including Android, iPad, iPhone and Symbian. The company says it is on over 300 million devices in 180 countries. QuickOffice products include Quickoffice Pro HD for iPad and Android (Honeycomb); Quickoffice Pro for iPhone, iPod Touch, Android; Symbian 3 and Symbian S60 and Quickoffice Lite for Symbian S60. More advanced products include licensing and enterprise solutions including ProSelect HD; ProSelect HD for Partners and ProSelect HD for Enterprise. Quickoffice Pro costs $14.99.

"Quickoffice has a strong base of users, and we look forward to supporting them while we work on an even more seamless, intuitive and integrated experience," Warren added.

While Google has a wide range of mobile apps, including productivity and business apps, integrating Quickoffice could strengthen the mobile offering of Google Apps. Quickoffice, as it exists today, is a user friendly and seamless way to view, edit, sync and share documents anywhere on any device.

"By combining the magic of Google's intuitive solutions with Quickoffice's powerful products, our shared vision for anytime, anywhere productivity can only grow," said Quickoffice co-founder and CEO Alan Masarek, on the company blog.

Strengths for Quickoffice include the ability to create, open and edit documents in a format Microsoft Office recognizes, namely Microsoft Word and Microsoft Excel. Google has built Google Docs to do this, but is actually integrating its documents programs into Google Drive. The transition to move users from Google Documents to Google Drive is under way.

While it's likely that Quickoffice will go away at some point as it becomes more integrated with Google Apps, its features will become more evident in the enhanced platform.

Earlier this year, Google discontinued access to the photo editing site Picnik. The online service with photo editing features similar to Adobe Photoshop was bundled in with Google+. It is now part of the Creative Kit on Google+, which helps users edit photos.

It is possible Google will make similar actions with Quickoffice at a later date. The question remains that many Quickoffice users paid for the app, and most services on Google are free. Will Google continue to support the paid versions for users who shelled out $14.99 for the app? Enterprise and licensing solutions are also fee-based, which could easily remain under a similar structure under Google.