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Photos: Google Cloud Connect in depth

How users can sync and share Microsoft Office documents via Google Docs...
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By Tim Ferguson on
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How users can sync and share Microsoft Office documents via Google Docs...

Google has launched a service that allows users to back up and share documents they've created with Microsoft Office applications via Google Docs.

Called Google Cloud Connect, the system is suitable for Word, Excel and PowerPoint documents created in Microsoft Office 2003, 2007 and 2010.

Once the Cloud Connect plug-in has been downloaded, users can back up a document to Google Docs by selecting the sync option, top right of the screen above, which appears in the toolbar of their Office application.

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Users can then select other users with whom to share the document by entering the relevant email addresses and adding a note to explain why the documents are being shared.

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The people selected for sharing the document receive an email with a link to the document in question, allowing them to view the document stored in Google Docs via the web browser.

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Here is the view of a document in the Google Chrome browser.

Users can download the document to their computer to edit it in the relevant Microsoft Office application.

Cloud Connect saves all previous versions of documents that have been backed up to Google Docs, so users can scroll back to an older version if the current one has been changed in error or is no longer accurate. The system also allows offline editing and syncs with Google Docs the next time the device is connected to the internet.

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Users in different locations can also work simultaneously on the same document.

Shown above, Bob is editing the figures in an Excel spreadsheet while Kim is adding a pie chart related to the figures in the same spreadsheet.

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As people can work on the same document at the same time, changes can potentially be made by different users to the same item. To avoid confusion, Google Cloud Connect has an option to allow the user to choose which version to save.

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