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January 23rd, 2014

Because iOS and OS X are small(er) markets for Microsoft, the firm does not hurry to get products fully ported to Apple’s devices. Lately the Redmond-based behemoth hinted, again, that it may tailor its productivity programs for iOS, create an Office version for our iPad rental, or do something else really nice for Apple folks.

Of course, there were none of the usual code words to indicate that any of these Office offerings would be “complete” ones rather than “lite” versions or dumbed-down web services. Because Word, Excel, and PowerPoint are so widespread (used worldwide by over 350,000,000 people), having access to them—preferably all the time, everywhere, on any device—is important. So free online Word, Excel, and PowerPoint? It’s a big deal.

CloudOnOne big deal deserves another

Therefore, CloudOn is a big deal, too. Although most longtime users have figured out Office workarounds, nothing but nothing can match the original. You get every installed feature without installing anything, perfect for when you have a computer rental or borrowed smartphone. CloudOn is available as an iOS and Android app, but also has a website, so you’ll be creating, editing, sharing, and presenting Office documents wherever you are.

The user interface is clean and uncluttered, as well as intuitive. Three icons at the top of the screen control the app’s main uses. The “Views” section, left, lets you choose workflow, icons, or lists to organize your work. The “Status” icon, center, opens your profile to edit it and/or change your password. The “Applications” section, right, gives you three ways to start a new file.

Cloud power

All changes are saved automatically to the cloud service where the file is stored so you will never lose your changes. Files can then be accessed, even downloaded, from any device—your desktop PC, a MacBook Pro rental—and from anywhere you can get online. Start a PowerPoint project in CloudOn on your iPhone then grab it from Dropbox when you get home, on your Windows PC.

Other popular cloud services are compatible with CloudOn, so when you set up your account you can connect to Google Drive, SkyDrive, and/or Box, too. Seeing all your files from all your accounts in a single location is very convenient. So is viewing any graphics file (PDF, JPG, GIF, PNG). This is Windows Office (without Windows) so Apple’s Pages, Keynote, and Numbers files are incompatible.

That nice, licensed look

Choose an appropriate Word doc, though, and it will open in a window that looks “right.” It has all the familiar settings, controls, paragraph alignments, and font adjustments, plus the same great menus and the entire range of editing options. The Excel and PowerPoint programs let you do pretty much everything that the full applications can, too, in working environments that mirror the programs. Whether you rent laptops for your road trips or take along your trusty tablet, you will now be creating, saving, sharing, and editing Office documents from anywhere, at any time, on just about any device. For free.

Even though you can’t rent a computer or laptop for free, CRE Rentals does offer competitive rates on the latest technology equipment in 21 locations nationwide. If you know what you need, just submit a Quick Quote online; otherwise call us at 877-266-7725 to speak to one of our experienced Account Executives.

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