Google has announced improved Microsoft Office document conversion and handling, plus a new iPad app exclusively for Google Apps for Business users.

Conversion of Microsoft Office documents to Google documents has been steadily improving over the last few months. We didn’t have any details from Google on this, just a noticeable improvement. The latest Google Enterprise Blog has now confirmed what we had suspected – the acquisition of Quickoffice, a world leader in office productivity,  has started to have a positive impact.Jonathan Rochelle, Director of Product Management, Google Drive said: “Since the Quickoffice team joined Google a few months ago, we’ve been working to make it easier for you to work with your legacy Microsoft Office files – both by converting them to Google documents and by editing them directly in Quickoffice.

“You’ve always had the option to convert documents from popular formats into Google Docs, where you can share and work together in real-time. In the past few months, we’ve incorporated Quickoffice conversion technology into this process so your Microsoft Word, Excel and Powerpoint files look even better when you convert them to Google Docs, Sheets and Slides, respectively.”

Editing Microsoft Office documents on iPad

Google have also announced a new iPad app, exclusively for Google Apps for Business customers, allowing users to easily open and edit any Office files stored in Google Drive right from an iPad. We’ve tried the app out for the past few days and have to say it is very good. Document editing is impressive and version handling is automatically managed, as it is when using Google Drive for Windows/Mac.

Converting documents to Google format is the easiest way to work in Google Apps, but It’s not always convenient, so this new iPad app is an essential download – and Google have promised an iPhone and Android app is on the way.