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Google Docs is going mobile

Editing on Android — and the iPad, too

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Google, while celebrating 30 million people having signed up to its cloudy documents service, has announced that editing will soon come to mobile users.

First will come a new verification process that will reduce the reliance on passwords and increase the security of connections. But "in the next few weeks," document editing will come to Android and the iPad — something that users have been asking for since Google launched its own mobile OS.

Google has provided almost no details of the editing capability, though it did show a demonstration at its Atmosphere event in Paris. Mobile users have been able to view documents hosted by the Chocolate Factory for years, and since many Android users find themselves incredulous that editing isn't possible, the addition will be a welcome one.

For corporate users, Google has launched two-factor authentication for mobile users. One of the factors is the mobile device itself, but it's still a step up from securing solely against a password. That feature is available to enterprise users immediately, rolling out to the hoi polloi over the next few months.

Mobile document editing is an enviable consequence of Android's move into the tablet space, and Google's provision for the iPad (no mention of iPhone support) is unsurprising as the company seeks to make cloud editing standard. Both the iPad and Android are peculiarity ill-equipped for office work — Android won't even support a Bluetooth keyboard (though Freedom Input have bodged a workable solution together), while the iPad can't manage a word count and neither platform will underline spelling mistakes like a real computer.

Editing of Google Documents on the move makes the cloud platform a lot more attractive, and might transform more of those 30 million users from experimenting early adopters into regular users.

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