Google makes Quickoffice free, gives you 10GB of extra Drive storageBy Jose Vilches
More than a year after acquiring mobile documents editing suite Quickoffice, Google has decided to slash its price down to zero, and is throwing in 10GB of Google Drive storage for the next two years to anyone who links Quickoffice to their account before September 26. Up until today, the suite was restricted to Google Apps business users, or as a standalone 'Pro' variant priced at $15 for iOS and Android handsets and $20 for tablets.
Quickoffice offers a hassle-free way to open and edit Microsoft Office files without the need to convert them to Google Docs first. Google is likely to merge its mobile and cloud-based documents suites over time, but for now there are still some compatibility limitations between the two. For instance, even though you can save documents to Drive within Quickoffice, documents created with Google Docs can only be viewed -- not edited.
In other words, if you need to use both suites, for now you are stuck with two separate apps for editing on mobile: Google Drive for Google's web based documents and Quickoffice for Microsoft Office files.
Nevertheless the move steps up the fight against Microsoft in the mobile front. The latter has also launched document editing apps for iOS and Android, but those are only available to Office 365 subscribers at $99/year.
The old Quickoffice for Google Apps and Quickoffice Pro versions are being pulled from Google Play and Apple's App Store and will no longer be supported after March 2014, so existing users will need to switch to the new app to ensure they keep receiving updates. Aside from the new price tag, the latest version includes some new features as well, such as the ability to create ZIP folders and view charts in PowerPoint and Excel.