smooth as butter

Apple’s web-based office software will force Google and Microsoft to up their game

July 2, 2013
Obsession
Mobile Web
July 2, 2013

Software developers who have early access to Apple’s competitor for office software programs like Google Drive and Microsoft Office are tripping over themselves to sing its praises.

Apple’s solution, named (awkwardly) iWork for iCloud, was built with one goal in mind, apparently: to make a web-based app experience that’s as good as a desktop application. The results are impressive. It’s a sharp contrast with Google’s strategy with web-based Google Drive, which has been purposefully minimalist from the beginning, frustrating users who wish it were more like the office productivity software we all grew up on: Microsoft Office.

But here’s the irony: Because iWork for iCloud works on the web, guess which company it might benefit just as much as Apple? That’s right, Google. Google’s Chrome OS, which runs only web-based apps, seems to be the perfect platform from which to access iWork for iCloud.

But there’s one hitch to iWork for iCloud: collaboration. Apple’s new office software doesn’t allow multiple users to work in one document simultaneously, which is strange considering that collaboration is the primary reason that people embrace (or put up with) the simplicity of Google Drive. That could be rectified in future updates of iWork for iCloud. Roger Rosen, head of iWork at Apple, said at Apple’s recent developers’ conference that awesome” updates are coming for iWork for iCloud by fall.

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