Home Gmail Gets One-Click Microsoft Word Previews

Gmail Gets One-Click Microsoft Word Previews

Google just announced a small but handy new feature for Gmail: one-click previews for Microsoft Word documents. This new features works for .doc and the more recent .docx format. Until now, Gmail’s one-click preview feature only supported PDF files, PowerPoint documents and images in the TIFF format. The new preview feature for Word documents replaces the “view as HTML” option in Gmail.

The new Word previews definitely look far better than the HTML preview it replaces. It handles page breaks, footnotes and other more advanced features without any issues. If you want to edit the document in Google Docs, once additional click from the previewer will open the document for editing. You can also save the document to your Google Docs account without leaving the preview mode. Of course, you can also download the document and edit it in your favorite desktop word processor.

Where Gmail is Going Next

Earlier today, Google also gave users a small glimpse into the future of Gmail. At the Usenix WebApps ’10 conference in Boston, Google staff engineer Adam de Boor noted that the company plans to take “maximum advantage” of HTML5. Through this, Google also hopes to increase the speed of Gmail’s load time. In addition, Google is working on an experimental build of Chrome that could keep the web app running in the background and have it ready to launch within less than a second.

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