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Chromebook owners will get easier access to Microsoft 365 and OneDrive

A look at how Chromebook owners will soon be able to integrate Microsoft 365 apps

While Google has lately tried to push Chromebooks as a cheaper way to enjoy cloud gaming, many owners of the Chrome OS devices use it for work, including connecting to Microsoft 365 apps and OneDrive cloud storage. At the moment, it's not all that intuitive to install Microsoft 365 and OneDrive on Chromebooks. However, Google recently announced it will be much easier to install and use those services for Chromebooks in the near future.

In a post on the Chrome OS Beta Tester Community Site (via Chrome Unboxed), Google said it would soon start testing a new Microsoft 365 setup for Chromebook owners. It will be available first on the Chrome OS Dev and Beta channels before its official release, which will happen sometime in the months ahead.

So what's going to be different? Currently, Chromebook users with Microsoft 365 have to install the Office Progressive Web App from the Office.com website. However, this new installation procedure doesn't look like it will require a website visit. Rather, Chromebook owners will get a more integrated way to install the Progressive Web App. In addition, users can connect their Chromebook's Files directory to their OneDrive cloud servers. The new system will move those Chromebook Files content into OneDrive when users launch Microsoft 365.

This sounds great, and the only real problem with this integration is that it won't be available to the general public for a while. Also, Google didn't really have to make this kind of effort. Its own Google Docs and Drive online products are direct competitors to Microsoft 365 and OneDrive. The fact that it is making a special effort shows that Google knows many Chromebook users like using Microsoft 365, which could spur more purchases of Chromebooks by business users.

Microsoft 365 recently added a new and cheaper $1.99/month subscription tier. It includes, among other features, access to Outlook without ads on mobile apps and its website, along with 100GB of OneDrive cloud space.

Source: Google via Chrome Unboxed

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