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Google Apps Jettison Older File Compatibility

Google continues to cut ties with older Microsoft technologies. Our last report showed that Google Apps wouldn't be supported on IE versions older than IE 8, which means XP users will have to move to Firefox or Chrome (which may be what Google had in mind in the first place!).

Now Google Docs will no longer export to older Microsoft Office formats and will mainly work with the newer DOCX files.

This is a bad, bad idea. As an editor I deal with files all the time, and not everyone has a late-model edition of Office that writes and reads DOCX. In fact, DOCX files are a huge pain for these Office users who have to use a filter to convert them to plain of DOC.

Should we all just suck it up and convert to these formats? Answers welcome at 

Posted by Doug Barney on 10/19/2012 at 1:19 PM

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Reader Comments:

Fri, Oct 19, 2012 Charlie Boston

IE 8 runs on XP. XP users can just upgrade to IE 8 if needed.

Fri, Oct 19, 2012 Nick California

We have been installing Open Office which handles the .docx extensions for our clients. It is free, works well with Windows and most of the formatting looks correct, there are some formatting issues at times, but it seems only with custom forms. Give it a is free! I have tried the compatiblity packs, but have had mixed reviews, some people state it works perfect for them and others state it does not work at all. OpenOffice works all of the time and is free. OpenOffice also has the equivalent of Word, Exce, PowerPoint and access...all for free! :)

Fri, Oct 19, 2012 Chris Seattle

Isn't there a Compatibility Pack for those "not ready for software that is now 5 years old" bunch of users, so they can keep using Office 2003 and adapt to the new file types?

Fri, Oct 19, 2012 Dan Iowa

I wouldn't be so quick to jump on Firefox or Chrome. What they said is they only support the current and prior major release of any of the browsers; Chrome, Firefox, IE, or Safari. So if your desire is to run really old software, you should move off of Google Docs, and to a productivity suite that has better support for legacy browsers. I suggest Office 2003. That will get you the warm feeling of an unsupported productivity suite to go with your unsupported OS and unsupported browser. ;-)

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