Office Web Apps, questions about the Chrome App

Office for Mere Mortals helps people around the world get more from Word, Excel, PowerPoint and Outlook. Delivered once a week. free.


There’s an “Office Web Apps” listing on the Chrome browser application store – is it a trap?

There are questions about an “Office Web Apps” applications available on the Google Chrome web store.

The Chrome web store is a place to get apps that can run inside your Chrome browser. Some are clever little programs that run in the browser. Office-Watch.com will be reviewing one soon. However, others are little more than links to web sites.

For example there’s this offering which is called “Office Web Apps” and uses the Office 2010 logo, icons and images.

OWA app on Chrome web store.jpg image from Office Web Apps, questions about the Chrome App at Office-Watch.com

Most curious is the source, called G.cn which is Google’s mainland China web address. The ‘Developer Website’ link is to office.live.com which might mislead people that it’s a Microsoft offering.

This ‘application’ is just a link to office.live.com which takes you to Microsoft Office Web Apps – the online versions of Word, Excel, PowerPoint and OneNote.

Instead of an application, all you need is a bookmark in your browser.

The comments on the ‘application’ vary a lot. Most are comments on the differences or superiority of Google Docs over Office Web Apps.

Some others note the non-Microsoft source and wonder if the app is a scam to get your login details to the live.com site. It doesn’t seem that way since the browser shows a secure link to office.live.com directly. If you are concerned, don’t use the application and use a bookmark instead.

The Chrome App Store would be better if the applications listing was clearer about which offerings are little more than links to online sites and which can operate offline. At the moment, the only way to find out is looking through the user comments.


Want More?

Office Watch has the latest news and tips about Microsoft Office. Independent since 1996. Delivered once a week.