Office Mobile and OneDrive Apps – What do I think?

I was so thrilled when Microsoft released Office Mobile for iPhones and Android devices.  I immediately installed it on my iPhone and was anxious to begin using it.
I also installed the OneDrive app as well.  My initial thoughts were that they were great!  Leaps and bounds from what we’ve had before.  Below are some features that I will give brownie points for.

Brownie Points

  1. I now have the ability to view and edit Word, Excel and PowerPoint documents on my iPhone.  How awesome is that?!
  2. Office Mobile allows me to save new files that I create on my device to OneDrive.
  3. I can open files in the OneDrive app and have the ability to edit them through Office Mobile.  Great teamwork!
  4. Office Mobile shows me the files I accessed recently, whether on my mobile device or on the PC, so I can quickly get to exactly what I may need.
  5. I can view and save files I receive via email to OneDrive without touching a computer.  Very convenient!
  6. I can share files or folders with my colleagues on the go so they don’t have to wait for me to return to the office.

So all is well in the Office Mobile and OneDrive worlds, right?  Well…not so fast.  In testing Office Mobile and OneDrive further, I found a few flaws that are not deserving of brownie points.

No Brownie Points

  1. Adding new places to Office Mobile is a manual process.  Not a big deal as it allows users to only add the sites that they want mobile access too.  However, to get the most efficient use out of it, when adding SharePoint sites, you need to enter the specific document library link that you want access to.  If you add the root URL, you will need to navigate to the document library each time you want to access a file.  Entering the specific link will give you direct access to your files.
  2. When creating new files or saving existing files to a new location in Office Mobile, it only gives you the ability to save to your root OneDrive folder.  It would be great if we had the ability to choose a specific location where we would like to save the files.
  3. There are limitations on what types of files you can edit in Office Mobile.



Word .docx, .dotx
Excel .xlsx, .xltx
PowerPoint .pptx, .pptm

Here are a few other FAQs that may be helpful to you:  iPhone / Android

  1. When files are accessed from SharePoint and edited, you have the ability to save your changes back to the site.  There is one gotcha though.  If your site has the Check Out requirement enabled where users must check out files before they can be edited, you will not be able to save the file.  Office Mobile allows you to open the file and make all the changes you need, however it’s not until it’s time to save your changes does it give you a message letting you know that it is not able to save the file.  This can be easily rectified though by turning off that option in your SharePoint site.  Not to worry, Office Mobile will still tell you when someone else is editing the file.  It’ll save your changes to your device and you can upload your changes at a later time.

All in all, I believe both the Office Mobile and OneDrive apps have given us capabilities that we’ve long needed and that are extremely beneficial.  With Microsoft’s focus on cloud solutions and mobility, these apps will only continue to improve. So I encourage you to install them on your device today and begin reaping the benefits!