Today sees the release of EditGrid Excel Plus in private beta. This new spreadsheet plug-in boasts several interesting features, but the one which will attract the most attention is a real-time spreadsheet-linking technology for which rival offerings, like those from Google and Microsoft, have no equivalent.Excel Plus includes a real-time linked sheet, which updates the native Excel sheet when its online version is altered. Other features include the ability to publish from Excel to EditGrid instantly, and the ability to open EditGrid workbooks directly from Excel.
This synchronized online/offline linking will have innumerable uses, particularly for those working with volatile data like stock prices, currency exchange rates, or other financial information.
The link is two-way, meaning that the Excel user can publish directly to an online EditPoint spreadsheet, and the new plug-in also enables Excel to work on downloaded EditGrid data while offline to easily synchronize with the online spreadsheet later. EditGrid is an online collaborative spreadsheet solution from Hong Kong-based developers Team and Concepts.
TnC maintain that its product has around 80 percent of the functionality of traditional desktop spreadsheet apps, ensuring that, by and large, "...the Excel user experience is re-created on the web."
Real-time editing of a single spreadsheet by multiple users is offered by EditGrid, and a synchronization tool (EditGrid Sync.) automatically backs data up from online to offline sources daily.
It will run on just about any browser, so long as it's a relatively recent version, and data can be imported and exported to and from most of the formats that matter.
A free version of the AJAX-enabled application is available for individual users, as well as licensed packages for installation behind the corporate firewall. SSL encryption keeps data safe, while user administration and management reporting modules are incorporated into the commercial versions.
"We realize that Excel is the most used spreadsheet tool in the enterprise environment,” says David Lee, chairman of Team and Concepts.
“EditGrid is more focused on delivering new Internet-enabled features and usages which Excel doesn’t provide. The Excel plug-in allows users to leverage EditGrid's power right from Excel.”
The Beta version of Excel Plus is only compatible with Excel 2003, but compatibility issues with other versions are expected to be resolved soon.
In September, the company launched EditGrid for iPhone, and has already attracted 10,000 subscribers for the service. View the video demo of Excel Plus here.