Google preps offline access to Google Docs

Posted by Mark Raby

You'll soon be able to access your Google Docs files even when you don't have an Internet connection.

This is apparently something Google has had on the back burner for years, but because we're all practically connected 24/7 - especially when wanting to access something like a word processing or spreadsheet file - there hasn't been a whole lot of interest from consumers.

Nevertheless, Google's senior VP Sunday Pichai told Cnet the launch of Google Docs offline access is "imminent."

"We've all been using it internally," said Pichai. "We want to make sure they're good."

It could certainly be useful for users who are on a non-Wi-Fi-accessible plane or train, or if you're on the road and need to show something to a client somewhere without online access, or even if your Internet goes out at home.

The fact that this new feature is coming out now, though, seems to make it much more likely that the focal point here is the impending launch of Google's computer operating system Chrome OS. It will use Google Docs as the default suite of office software, so the ability to access it anytime, anywhere is paramount.

The addition of offline access is also on the books for Google's other browser-based Google Apps programs.

The first slate of devices to use Chrome OS, a lineup of notebooks from Acer and Samsung, are slated to be released next month.