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Googlephone gets native MS Office viewers

Edits still impossible

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Mobile-doc mavens Quickoffice have brought their handheld Microsoft Office viewers to the Googlephone.

Quickoffice for Android will make its debut sometime this week when Google finally opens its Android (app) Market to mobile apps with price tags. Able to view Word and Excel files saved in Microsoft's Office 2003 format, the suite will sell for $7.99 a pop.

The suite does not offer Microsoft-happy editing. But Quickoffice director of marketing Eric Farlander says the company is hard at work on Android editors for both Word and Excel. An Android PowerPoint viewer is slated for March.

With the inaugural Googlephone - the T-Mobile G1 - you can view Word and Excel in HTML format. But Quickoffice provides native viewing. "This allows for in-depth viewing, such as resizing Excel columns and seeing formulas in cells," according to a company engineer. The suite also includes a file manager - another tool you won't find on the G1.

At the moment, the G1 is the only commercially-available phone running Google's open-source mobile stack. But today, at Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, HTC and Vodafone unveiled a successor: the HTC Magic.

On the Apple iPhone, Quickoffice currently offers Excel 2003 editing and Word and Excel 2007 viewing. For Symbian, it provides viewing and editing for Word and Excel 2007 files.

Farlander says the company has "worked closely" with Google on the new suite. But like the rest of the world, he has no idea when the for-pay Android Market will actually open. Google has said "the middle of the week." ®

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