1. alisonnic's Avatar
    I'd like to be able to do "electronic markup" on documents on my Asus Flip Chromebook. To do this I'd need the reviewing features present in MS Word. These include the ability to track changes and also create and edit comments in Word (.doc and/or .docx) documents.

    At home I can use MS Word on my desktop to do this, but I'd like to be able to do this on the go with my Chromebook. I need the comments and tracking in the app to be compatible with MS Word.

    Can anyone suggest an Android app that can do this? I've tried WPS Writer and MS Word Online but WPS doesn't allow comments and neither allows tracking.



    The Flip is an Asus CP100PA, and it has the Google Play Store installed.

    On my Windows 10 PC I typically use Word 2003, which can edit both .doc and .docx files and has the reviewing features (tracking changes and adding/editing comments) I need. I could also use either LibreOffice or WPS Writer on the PC.

    I'm on a fixed income so a subscription isn't practical; a one-time purchase might be doable, however.
    03-31-2018 08:14 AM
  2. Golfdriver97's Avatar
    Google Docs can read some of MS formats, but getting it back to MS might be troublesome.
    03-31-2018 08:38 AM
  3. alisonnic's Avatar
    Thanks for your response, Golf.

    I just uploaded a .docx file to Google Docs. The document contained comments and tracked changes. GDocs did not even display either the comments or the change tracking, and GDocs did not have a way to either track changes or enter comments, at least not that I could find.

    So unfortunately that's not the solution I need.

    Ah. I tried saving the .docx file in GDocs to Google Doc format. Now I can see the changes and comments in GDocs. Now to try saving it back to .docx format...
    03-31-2018 10:02 AM
  4. alisonnic's Avatar

    Following the suggestion in Golfdriver's comment, I've tried using Google Docs in Chrome on the Chromebook to add comments and track changes in Word .docx files. It works, but there are some caveats:

    A. The process is cumbersome. To edit a Word document in Google Docs on the Chromebook, I have to perform the following steps:

    1. Upload the .docx to Google Drive
    2. Convert the document to Google Docs format
    3. Perform the markups (tracked edits & comments)
    4. Download the file to the Downloads folder as a .docx
    5. Rename or delete the original document in Dropbox
    6. Move the document from the Downloads folder to an appropriate folder in Dropbox


    B. Sometimes the first comment in the .docx does not get carried through the process. This may have something to do with the fact that the comment was located at the very beginning of the file, and the selected text was merely the cursor location.

    I think I can work around B., but I'd really like to have a solution that is not as cumbersome as this. So I'm still looking for a native Android app that can do comments and track changes in a .docx file.
    03-31-2018 11:45 AM
  5. Golfdriver97's Avatar
    Open office can read some MS files as well, but I don't think it will work with Chrome OS any better than Drive/Docs.
    03-31-2018 01:48 PM
  6. alisonnic's Avatar
    Thanks for the suggestion, Golf. I've tested about a dozen different solutions, including the AdrOpen Office app for Android, but none of them have been a complete and bug-free solution.

    I've poked around the OpenOffice and LibreOffice web sites. As far as I can tell, OpenOffice does not have an Android app, and neither site offer a web browser-based editor.

    LibreOffice does have an Android app viewer, but its editing feature is experimental and not stable at this time.

    There is a third party Android app called AndrOpen Office derived from the PC version of OpenOffice, but I tried it and it has some serious drawbacks. I may give it another shot, though; it appears to be a full port of OpenOffice to the Android platform so I may be able to configure it to work around most of the drawbacks.

    So far the best Android apps I've found for my purpose are these:

    SoftMaker Office - I bought the in-app upgrade to TextMaker HD Basic for $5. This has almost all the commenting and tracking features I need, but its interface with Dropbox is broken. It crashes whenever I try to open a .docx or .doc file from Dropbox. I have to copy my document from Dropbox to the local Download folder on my Flip before I can edit it, and then copy the edited version back to Dropbox. It also lacks a summary table for comments and tracked changes, but I could live without this. The crashing opening Dropbox files is a major pain, though.

    WPS Office - This works well with Dropbox, and it does comments and change tracking, but it lacks next/previous buttons for comments and tracked changes. When reviewing a large document, the absence of these features would be a serious drawback. These buttons may be added in the future, according to their support's response to my email query.

    I'm a bit burned out at the moment, but if I find something that works well, I'll post it here.
    04-04-2018 11:31 AM
  7. chanchan05's Avatar
    Does the official MS Word app not have the features you need? I understand though that it needs a paid Word license to get all the features.

    There's also the free version of OfficeSuite for you to try.
    04-04-2018 11:47 AM
  8. r0ckrat's Avatar
    MS Word from Google Play store does have "Track Changes" in the Review tab, with comments and revision tracking. I think you can use it free for some time, but I'm not sure. The android version of Excel also has more functionality than the online version.
    05-02-2018 07:37 PM

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