Apr 29, 2011
Google have released a variety of official apps for their services for Android, but Google Docs has largely gone unnoticed. Google are addressing this in a way, with the release of a Google Docs app for Android. This free app allows for users to pull up a list of and open their Google Docs on their phone, with the ability to edit documents and spreadsheets, as well as the ability to upload photos.
The app doesn’t actually offer any kind of native editing for documents or spreadsheets, though – it only provides a front end for accessing the mobile version of Google Docs, as the app only loads up the mobile website’s editor, not any kind of custom in-app editor. The app lets you import documents from the camera for use with Google’s OCR (optical character recognition service), although you will need to make sure your picture is of good quality when you take it for the service to properly recognize it.
What this is useful for is the ability to access multiple accounts easily from one place – you can easily switch accounts from those you synchronize your phone with by tapping your phone’s menu button. So, for those who use personal account as well as accounts with Google Apps may find this particularly useful. However, it would be great if the app got a makeover similar to the Gmail app, to where you have a native app experience for editing documents. It would be great to have a free app similar to what an app like Quickoffice provides, but for Google’s services exclusively. Also, it would be nice to be able to download documents to your phone, or open them up in other apps. For example, PDFs can’t be viewed in a native PDF viewer, they can only be viewed in the app’s viewer. Clearly, this app needs a lot of work to make it something that could be truly useful, but for now, it serves as a decent access point for the service from your phone. Google Docs is available for free from the Android Market.