Google has warned it’s app users that they will be unable to download documents to their computers in Microsoft Office 1997-2003 formats from the start of the month.The decision continues Google’s continuing battle against Microsoft.
However Google Apps runs in the cloud- which provides an alternative to Microsoft’s Office productivity suite.
Users of versions of Office bought before 2007 may be unable to open documents modified using Google Apps.
The formats which are no longer supported are .doc, .xls and .ppt.
Google issued the warning on its Google Apps update blog earlier this week.
Google Apps users will still be able to open and edit documents that were created in the older formats once the change comes into effect, but they will be unable to save them on their computer or pass them on to others in their original format.
For people who use Office 2003 or earlier, the move creates an obstacle to sharing documents with Google Apps users.
That is because once modified in Google Apps, a document created in Microsoft’s suite may no longer be usable by the document’s original author.
Google now supports saving documents in Microsoft’s newer .docx, .xlsx and .pptx formats used in Office 2007 and Office 2010, as well as other formats including Open Document Format (.odf and .ods), a freely available standard used as the default format by free office suites including OpenOffice and LibreOffice.