Business Software

Expo Notes: Quickoffice Connect for iPad shows off new features, previews collaboration services integration

Quickoffice Connect Mobile Suite ( ), an iPhone productivity app, was a Macworld 2010 Best of Show winner. More recently, Quickoffice released its much-awaited sequel, Quickoffice Connect Mobile Suite for iPad, which it’s now promoting on the Macworld 2011 show floor.

Like its predecessor on the iPhone, Quickoffice Connect Mobile Suite for iPad offers the ability to create and edit Word documents, Excel spreadsheets, and PowerPoint presentations. The app supports .doc(x), .xls(x), and and .ppt files; .pptx support is in progress. Quickoffice also integrates with numerous cloud services, like MobileMe, Dropbox, Google Docs, Box.net, Huddle, and SugarSync.

On the iPhone, Quickoffice was limited in terms of how it could display documents, reflowing them to fit the smaller screen. With the iPad’s greater screen real estate, however, Quickoffice gives your documents more room to breathe, and shows you the true pages with their original layouts. You can use multitouch gestures to zoom in and out on individual pages. Drag and drop plays a key role in the app, too; you can drag text, drag documents onto 'share' and 'delete' action buttons, and more. And when working with longer documents, you can drag your finger along the side of the screen to scroll through an otherwise-invisible virtual “filmstrip” navigation tool. Since we first reviewed the app, Quickoffice added numerous refinements, including word counts and far more text manipulation controls.

Quickoffice now supports video output, so that you can present PowerPoint decks directly from your iPad. In that mode, you get slide navigation tools and notes on your iPad screen that aren’t mirrored on your video display—along with the current slide, of course. By pressing and holding on the iPad screen, you can control a virtual laser pointer, too.

Michael Hyland, product manager for Quickoffice, showed me a cool new feature for the iPad app coming later this year: integration with various real-time collaboration services. By dragging your documents onto an icon, you can instantly save your files to services like Scribd, SlideShare, and Docstoc.

Quickoffice Connect Mobile Suite for iPad costs $25, but is currently $15 for an unspecified limited time. It requires iOS 3.2 or later.

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