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Google acquires mobile productivity company Quickoffice

Google has announced plans to purchase Quickoffice, a mobile productivity software suite that enables viewing and editing Microsoft Office documents, spreadsheets and presentations. The decision comes as the company says it's working to ramp up its online Office competitor, Google Apps.

"Quickoffice has an established track record of enabling seamless interoperability with popular file formats, and we'll be working on bringing their powerful technology to our Apps product suite", Google engineering director Alan Warren wrote in a blog post.

Google is preparing to take on Microsoft, the current market leader in office productivity software, with its suite of online apps. As Microsoft makes more progress with its cloud-based applications, Google will have to multiply its efforts to keep up. The company says that more than 4,000 companies are currently running on its Google Apps suite, but it still has a long way to go in competing with Microsoft.

"Google Apps is taking more business away from Microsoft than we expected, raising its stature as an enterprise provider", according to a recent report published by research firm Gartner. "Microsoft's dominance on-premises prevails but, ultimately, it may face a serious threat to its Office franchise."

Quickoffice is currently available for the iOS, Android and Symbian mobile operating systems. And, amid rumours that Microsoft is creating an Office app for iOS and Android devices, it appears the purchase may be well timed.