Not too long ago, I mentioned how Google Docs didn’t have an offline mode for you to use on your Chromebook. But I also mentioned how Google had plans for bringing Google Docs to the “outernet” by the end of Summer. Well, it’s the end of Summer, and guess what – they’re here! That’s right, following through with their earlier promise, Google has given Google Docs an offline mode. And not only that, but they’ve brought Gmail and Google Calendar along for the ride. Yep, through the power of HTML5, Google has indeed given us new apps for these three. Now we can all mess with our emails, check the date, and play with documents on your Chrome laptop, all while off the web.
What Are They, Anyway?
Gmail, Google Calendar, and Google Docs perform several different functions. But all three apps are important in their own right. The functions of these apps are as follows:
- Gmail – this is Google’s prized email service. As any email service allows you to do, you can send emails, receive emails, keep spam from reaching you (which I find works much better than any other email services I’ve used), and much more. There’s so much going for Gmail that it’s no wonder it took the virtual world by storm.
- Google Calendar – this is Google’s easy-to-use time-management app. It’s basically…well…a calendar. It has basic calendar functions, such as keeping track of events and just plain checking the date. It also allows you some non-traditional calendar features, such as setting RSVPs for certain events. One thing’s for sure – this definitely beats the old calendar you throw up on the wall any day.
- Google Docs – this is Google’s amazing office suite. If you were to take Microsoft Office and allow everyone to collaborate with all the work, you’d get Google Docs. This app allows you to work with other users in real-time on things from documents to spreadsheets to presentations (like PowerPoint). It’s perfect for anyone who needs to work with people on something, yet can’t meet due to time restraints.
What Good is Offline Mode?
So Google now has an offline mode for Gmail, Google Calendar, and Google Docs; so what? What good is doing these things without the internet (with the exception of the calenders, since everyone has one in their house anyway)? Well, these three apps actually do quite a bit while not connected to the web. You’ll have to install Offline Google Mail app from Chrome Web Store, though, in order for all this to work.
Unfortunately, things that can be done with Google Docs whilst offline are not the same things you can do online. You can only view documents and spreadsheets but you can not edit documents yet. However, Google said they are working on it. Regarding to Gmail and Google Calendar, you can check your emails, write new ones and respond to RSVPs, and the things that require internet access will be sent automatically as soon as your Chrome laptop detects Internet connection. This can be extremely useful in certain situations, especially those in which your Chromebook has limited access. So if you at least need to work on anything these apps are for, yet you don’t have time to wait for the internet, check out these offline apps. Your Chromebook will thank you.