Wes Miller, an analyst at Directions on Microsoft, said in an interview this week that there could eventually be three levels of Office: one for the iPhone, with the ability to access documents and do light editing; a more full-featured version for the iPad; and a "full" version of Office for the Mac or other desktop platforms.
Gadekar said that he saw similar layers of functionality: an "access" layer, a "review" layer, and a "heavy editing" aspect. The first two could be performed offline, he said, with only the third requiring a persistent level of connection.
CloudOn's plan is to address those issues in the coming months, Gadekar said. The company's roadmap calls for collaborative sharing and editing of documents by this summer, with additional improvements throughout the rest of the year. By the fourth quarter, he said, some of the offline functionality for the access and review aspects of CloudOn should be enabled.
Gadekar also addressed questions of network connectivity, which can be a source of headaches when using a cloud-based service like CloudOn. There is an advantage to a native application, he admitted, especially when dealing with the unpredictability of a network interface. "We continue to make investments to help improve the experience," he said.
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