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This Week in Google Apps – 2/24

BetterCloud Monitor

February 24, 2012

2 minute read

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Take at a look at this week’s biggest stories in the Google Apps Ecosystem:

  1. Microsoft made waves this week with their “Googlighting” video parodying the 1980’s ABC hit sitcom “Moonlighting.” Sure it was catchy, but while Microsoft was rolling out their viral video, Google was rolling out new product features (see 2 and 3); and we’ve chosen to build off of Google’s platform because of this constant innovation. For Microsoft, it’s time to move away from software that changes every couple of years (at best) and embrace the cloud, as they’re slowly doing with Office 365. But with elementary schools quickly buying up chromebooks and more and more universities migrating their email systems to Google Apps, is Microsoft fighting a losing battle? Check out Forbes’ Robert Hof’s take on the video here.
  1. This Wednesday, Google announced an updated Google Docs app for Android. One of the most attractive features of moving from legacy email systems to the cloud is the flexibility provided to the end-user and the ability to work from basically anywhere. Now Android users can easily collaborate and edit in real time right from their smartphones or tablet devices. Desktop? What desktop!
  1. Speaking of collaboration, Google also rolled out the updated version of Google Presentations to all users on Wednesday. Available since October in preview, the new default for presentations allows users to comment directly on objects or whole slides in real time, add animation, slide transitions and more. Want to hear what your coworker thinks without allowing them to make changes to the presentation? – You can do that too! To convert existing Google presentations to the new collaborative version, simply create a new presentation and import slides from the old file.
  1. Though the debate over Google+ continues to rage on, there’s no denying the many benefits provided to businesses especially since the Google+ for Business launch last November. At BetterCloud, we love Hangouts and find the feature is an easy and seamless way to communicate with resellers around the globe. Just this week, we jumped into an impromptu Hangout with a reseller in Hong Kong. We were instantly connected face-to-face and when the reseller asked us for a product demo, we enabled screen sharing and conducted the demo all from within Google+. For more on what Google+ can do for your business check out Jennifer Lonoff Schiff’s article in CIO.
  1. TechCrunch’s John Biggs posted an interesting article this week questioning the necessity of MS Office. With the rise of cheap and reliable text editing programs and cloud applications like Google Docs, Biggs likens MS Word to nothing more than a glorified typewriter. Tablets are slowly replacing printers and the move to the paperless office is underway. At BetterCloud, the move to our new office was nothing more than renting a car, carrying out our computers and power chords and driving downtown.