Google Docs now fully viewable, editable on iPad

It's not always pretty, but at least Google Docs is getting a lot closer to a normal browser experience on the iPad.

Google Docs on the iPad: not perfect, but better than it used to be.
Google Docs on the iPad: not perfect, but better than it used to be. screenshot/Scott Stein

Google launched a mobile Google Docs update recently, enabling the writing and editing of text and spreadsheet documents, but a newly-enabled desktop mode now lets any iPad user get Google Docs on the go, for real.

It's not intuitive, but clicking on "Desktop" mode on the bottom of any document you're editing opens up a Google Docs viewer/editor that matches what you'd see in any normal computer web browser. The interface is a bit slow and reacts oddly to the iPad's on-screen keyboard (text was shifted out of the window's viewing range), but the ability to have full Google Docs functionality on the go is something most iPad users have been dreaming of for months.

Bottom line: it's not a replacement for a good word processor such as Apple's Pages, especially since Wi-Fi iPads will be offline at times, but it's a very good start...especially for those of us heading to CES in just a few short weeks.

About the author

Scott Stein is a senior editor covering iOS and laptop reviews, mobile computing, video games, and tech culture. He has previously written for both mainstream and technology enthusiast publications including Wired,, Men's Journal, and Maxim, and regularly appears on TV and radio talking tech trends.


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