Office for iPad Needs To Improve File Caching

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Word for iPad

Microsoft is updating their Office apps on iOS at a pretty blistering rate, with a major update every one or two months, but it’s still lacking one basic feature for me: easier local storage.

Having Microsoft Excel on my iPad has been immensely useful, but it’s highly dependent on having a good internet connection when I want to access my files. I keep my work files on my office-supplied OneDrive for Business account, and accessing a large PowerPoint file can take upwards of a minute at times. Other times the download can simply stall on me, leaving me without all of the numbers I’m supposed to talk about at my meeting.

What I’d want here would be a quick way to star or earmark files for quick local caching so that, as long as I haven’t made any changes to the file, I can open the iPad up at any time and just re-open said file. What the iOS Office apps seem to do, however, is simply re-download the files every single time I want to access them, regardless of whether or not there were changes since I last loaded them. I do have the option of duplicating the file and saving a local copy to my iPad, but that copy won’t automatically sync any changes to my work PC, so it’s not really a workable solution.

I’d love to see a solution in the next few months that adds a switch to quickly cache a file as local (like Google’s Docs/Sheets/Slides apps) so that I can work on spotty Wi-Fi, but still enjoy the benefits of file syncing on OneDrive.


Thomas

My name is probably Thomas (yes, it is). I'll be able to help you figure out why Evernote isn't syncing, or recommend your favourite new RSS reader to you. That's partly because I am enamoured with the iOS ecosystem and hardware, but mostly because I'm Canadian.

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3 thoughts on “Office for iPad Needs To Improve File Caching”

  1. It does this to ensure you are accessing the latest version of a document. Turning on airplane mode will force the Office apps to load the latest cached version of recently accessed documents.

  2. I use Documents by Readdle to have locally my Dropbox, Onedrive, and Gdrive synchronized.
    I can open an edit locally all office files off-line, and after sync whenever I have connection.

    Works maverlously, even if usually the sync is more lengthy than I wanted. It made possible for me to finally turn the iPad into a practical working tool.

    1. That sounds pretty cool; how do you go about syncing files back to One Drive through Documents after editing them in Office?

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