Apple welcomes Linux and Android users to iWork

In today's open source roundup: Apple opens iWork up to Linux and Android users. Plus: A Gizmodo writer abandons Chrome for Firefox, and Google may offer a Chromebook that runs Android and Chrome OS

Linux and Android users can now use iWork

Apple has made its iCloud beta available for users on other platforms, including Linux and Android. The iCloud beta site offers access to Mail, Contacts, Calendar, Drive, Reminders, Pages, Numbers and Keynote.

Chris Merriman reports for the Inquirer:

The beta iCloud site has been updated to allow sign-ups from any device, which provides access to some of the features of an iCloud account via the web on Windows, Linux, Chrome OS and even Android. Users of the new service will also be entitled to 1GB of iCloud space just for signing in from another operating system.

The fight is on to destabilise Microsoft's Office suite as the de facto for productivity, and Apple has realised that it needs the non-Apple community more than it needs exclusivity. Whether we'll see iTunes and iMessage available to a wider audience any time soon is debatable, but it's a good first step in cross-compatibility in a proprietary world.

More at The Inquirer

Some folks in the comments section of the Inquirer article had some thoughts to share and they didn't pull any punches:

ATInsider: "iWork is as useless as iPhones within the work place. Talk about a company in desperation. "

Ohyes: "Apple has just woken up to the fact that MS has made its software and services available to pretty much everyone. MS has remembered it's a software company and that means it's all about getting your software on as many devices as possible. Apple also knows that they are several years behind MS with the fact that MS now has a full OS that will work across virtually any hardware be it tablet, laptop or PC. Some of those mad gambles the press were laughing at a couple of years ago (8/RT etc.) have now paid off royally for MS. Not so stupid."

Dave Allanach: "The people who were laughing at Windows 8 and RT either still are or have died due to being unable to catch their breath. Some of the services that were introduced or heavily developed around the same time (such as Office 365 and OneNote) are now paying out dividends..."

Ohyes: "Windows 8 was the lurch they needed to do to get to 10. It happens every now and then. RT/ARM was the push to get Intel to make the chips MS wanted in the first place. Hence why we can now buy a $100 Atom tablet with full x64 Windows 8.1/10 on it. It was all part of the plan. The hipster IT journos just didn't see it. Too busy tapping away on their iPads in Starbucks jumping on the slagging off bandwagon."

More at The Inquirer

Gizmodo writer abandons Chrome for Firefox

When Chrome was released it won over some Firefox users, but the tide may be turning as some users switch back to Firefox, including a writer at Gizmodo.

Eric Limer reports for Gizmodo:

Remember when we all switched from Firefox to Chrome? Chrome was stripped down, simple but fast as hell. It was like browsing the web on a whole new computer. These days Chrome is bloated, slow, and constantly crashing on me. I've finally reached the breaking point.

I've been revving myself up to switch for a while now, as Chrome has steadily gotten worse and worse. The writing has been on the wall for years. In 2011 Google was already "aggressively looking at options to bring down the size of Chrome distribution binaries."

More at Gizmodo

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