Google Docs and cloud storage and content management player Box.net have joined forces in a bid to hold their ground against Microsoft Office 365 when it officially launches next week.
Aaron Levie, Box CEO and co-founder, said in a blog post that the "major integration" between Box and Google Docs adds the ability to leverage Google Docs directly from their Box accounts.
"Beginning today, Box's 6 million users can easily create and collaborate on Google Docs and Spreadsheets from within Box, as well as edit the existing 50 million-plus Word and Excel files already stored on our platform," Levie wrote.
The cloud integration, Levie wrote, fuels the collaborative capabilities of Google Docs by offering a storage platform for documents and files created in Google's cloud office application suite.
"Google Docs enable entirely new forms of collaboration -- like concurrent editing -- that are impossible within desktop applications, and now these capabilities are easily available to Box users. We believe that the combination of Google Docs' collaborative editing and Box's content management will transform the way people work, and we look forward to hearing if you agree," Levie wrote.
The Google Docs-Box.net integration comes as Microsoft preps to launch Office 365, its cloud productivity suite, on June 28. It is the latest power move in the contentious back-and-forth cloud kerfuffle between Google and Microsoft as the pair battle over features and functions and high-profile cloud customer wins.
Levie said that Office 365 lacks the power and functionality of Google Docs and added that Microsoft likely won't open Office 365 to third-party developers.
"At Box, we believe that the true power of the cloud is unlocked through deep integrations and information sharing between applications," he wrote. "The future isn't about a single vendor solution for all your IT needs, but rather a mix of cloud applications. But in order for this new approach to be successful, it is absolutely critical that these systems work together. We want our users to have access to the most powerful tools for their content -- some of these will come from us, many of them will come from partners. Google is there, Microsoft isn't. We look forward to a day when we can offer users the choice between a Microsoft Office experience and a Google Docs experience. But until then, we'll continue to invest in our relationship with Google to create the best possible experience for managing documents in the cloud."