Google Docs gets limited PDF support

Google Docs, the online office suite from the search giant, now has some limited but still useful support for PDF files.

People using the service now can upload and view documents encoded with the widely used and now standardised Portable Document Format initially created by Adobe Systems. People also can transfer PDFs stored on the Web.

PDF files now show in Google Docs' interface

Google Docs, still in beta testing, competes with Microsoft Office but is relatively primitive when it comes to feature support.

However, because it's web based, Google can add new features relatively easily; users simply use the Web site, and they appear, one of the chief advantages of the software-as-a-service approach. And given that Google's three big areas of focus are search, ads, and applications, expect lots of resources to be poured into this area.

Although the PDF support is convenient, some of its functionality needs ironing out, such as the zoom which is not easily identifiable. Search also doesn't scour the contents of PDF files, a feature whose significance Google, of all companies, presumably understands.

Editing has limitations too, with users unable to type text in a PDF, though it's possible to export other Google Docs files to PDF.

PDFs in Docs is optimal with screens at least 1024 pixels wide, however the site still has problems handling PDF files exceeding the 10MB size limit.

Via CNET News.com



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