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Microsoft adds more cloud storage options to Office apps on Android

Third-party cloud storage platforms like Dropbox and Box have been available in desktop versions of Microsoft Office for a few years, but the mobile versions have been much more limited. Oh, they supported OneDrive, but who uses that? Starting today, you have new storage options and a few more on on the way.

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Microsoft Word, PowerPoint, and Excel updated with better sharing features

Microsoft has long since abandoned the strategy of keeping its apps and services confined to its own platform. Windows Phone didn't really work out, so it's not like there's another option. Microsoft's Word, PowerPoint, and Excel apps are getting a nice update today on Android that makes them better at handling shared content. PowerPoint also gets some UI tweaks.

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Microsoft Office apps get inking and SD card support, Word gets touch-friendly tables

In the latest series of updates to Microsoft's Office apps for Android, the headlining feature is inking support with a couple of other minor additions. Of those, the one most likely to affect your day-to-day use is that each app now allows for saving to SD cards.

Still, the most exciting part of these updates is inking. As the name suggests, this is digital ink. You can draw with your finger or stylus, as I did in the image below. If you have a phone or tablet with an active digitizer like the Samsung Note series, they will support those pressure-sensitive features as well.

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Latest Android update for Microsoft Word, PowerPoint, and Excel brings IRM support, home screen shortcuts to files, and Word can now open TXT files

Microsoft continues to hammer away at its Android offerings, this time with monthly updates to its office suite. There's no earth-shaking changes here, but as usual regular users are going to appreciate these. The most broadly useful is the new ability to put shortcuts to Office files on your home screen, much like on your desktop computers. For the business types, each of the three apps can now open IRM-protected files.

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Microsoft Word, Excel, And PowerPoint For Android Updated With 'Tell Me' Helper And A Few Other Tweaks

Have you ever wished that your complex word processing software had a simple search function to let you know where the hell it put the word count? It does, and it's called Google. But say you don't want to pop out to another program to do so. That's the idea behind "Tell Me," a feature introduced into the latest versions of Microsoft's various Office programs. It's essentially just a search box with a few predictive tricks to help users find some of the less obvious features. Today it comes to the Android versions of Word, Excel, and PowerPoint.

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Microsoft Updates Office Apps With 'Quick Access Commands' And Other Usability Features

While Google continues to improve the Drive suite experience on Android, Microsoft is making headway with Office on Android. All three apps (Word, Excel, and Powerpoint, in case you need a reminder) have gotten updates, adding features and improving editing tools on touchscreens.

Word

Word has two major new or improved features in this release. The first is a better experience when inserting a table into a document. Before, configuring a table was a finicky and fiddly mess, equivalent to painting a tiny model soldier with pins and needles in your hands. With this update, inserting a table is much easier; the cells are bigger by default, with a resize handle at the bottom right to quickly resize the table.

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Microsoft Adds PDF Export, Direct-From-Camera Picture Insertion, And RTF Support To Office Apps For Android In Latest Updates

Microsoft has been steadily marching towards getting familiar desktop features onto their mobile apps. Most recently, that meant support for versioning, auto-save, and live collaboration. This time around, all three get the ability to export to PDF, something we take for granted when using the full versions of Office. They also get a new feature allowing users to insert images directly from your camera, which of course is a feature more unique to mobile. For its part, Microsoft Word for Android can now open RTF files, which falls into the "I didn't realize it couldn't already do that" category for many of us.

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Microsoft Updates All Three Office Apps With Auto Save, Version History, Collaborative Editing, And More App-Specific Features

Microsoft is rolling out big updates to all three of its major Office apps for Android, with several overlapping improvements. The highlight is the addition of auto-save, a staple on desktop versions and frankly overdue on mobile with so many more opportunities for lost connections, unexpected battery drains, and other interruptions. In the same vein, Word and Powerpoint get real-time collaborative editing support, similar to what is available in the web apps and Google Docs.

Screenshot_2016-03-16-13-21-31 Screenshot (March 16, 2016 1:24 PM)

I took a test drive with the collaborative editing on Word and it wasn't exactly seamless. The browser version says I was editing while offline, which is a decent way to describe the way it worked.

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Skype Comes To OneDrive So You Can Chat While You Pretend To Work

Have you ever wanted to chat with your buddies at work but were afraid of what your boss might say if they caught you slacking off? Then you're in luck, because Microsoft has got your back: Skype is now fully integrated into OneDrive, so you can finally gossip and send emoji and still look entirely professional while doing so.

Of course, that's not really the point of having a Skype sidebar built into your company's revenue spreadsheet for last quarter: Microsoft is selling the concept as a means of boosting productivity and letting coworkers collaborate in real time on documents. Each chat history even stays connected to its respective document, so it's always easy to search back and find what you were looking for.

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Microsoft Services Will Soon Come Preinstalled On Acer Phones And Tablets, Partnerships Expand To 74 Global OEMs

Microsoft is slowly reinventing itself, acquiring interesting companies like SwiftKey and Sunrise Calendar, changing the way people perceive it and its services, and improving its apps across multiple platforms. We've sure seen the effects here on Android Police — there's hardly any week that passes by without us mentioning the company at least once, and that's Android which isn't even its main platform.

With its new and improved services and apps, Microsoft has been trying to find a permanent home on your devices, and what better way to do that than come preinstalled on your phone or tablet? That means it'd be the de-facto office viewer for many users when they come across a Word, Excel, or PowerPoint document.

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