I’ve started using and discussing Excel 2012 and while I still have a lot of exploring to do, one thing that I quickly noticed was the fact that one of the main benefits is the fact that it is cloud based. I’ve written about the benefits of cloud based software and how much it has helped Google Docs catch up. In short, two of the major benefits are:
-being able to access your software from any location
-Ability to share documents
From what I understand, unlike Google docs, you cannot have multiple users editing a document all at once. But being able to handle the cloud drive portion is still a very important part of the Excel 2012 software. Once you sign up for the free trial, you instantly also get access to SkyDrive, which is Microsoft’s own cloud-based drive, which competes with Dropbox, Google Drive and Applee’s iCloud among others. Once you get access to Skydrive, you can (and should) install it on your pc. When that happens, you will see it in your explorer:
Then, any file that you save on that part of your drive will automatically be made available through Skydrive on the web:
Ideally, you also have your excel and other office documents in that area in order to:
-have access to them from anywhere
-ability to share them easily
Then, you can log into your Skydrive and access the file, even if that computer does not have excel installed on it, which is certainly a nice benefit. Also, any changes that you make will be reflected in the updated file on your computer.
Is Installing Excel Even Necessary?
I think it’s a valid question but I’m assuming that some of the functions in Excel 2012 do not work in a web based version (such as web queries, certain macros, etc) only work on desktop,,I would certainly hope that over time those missing features are added but I guess time will tell. My main thoughts are that unless the online version of Excel is extremely solid, there will be little use to having Skydrive rather than competing services. There’s no doubt that it requires some adapting but I think it’s a great thing overall.
Have you started using Excel 2012? If so what are your thoughts? And have you started integrating SkyDrive?