How to Use Microsoft Office on a Chromebook
Microsoft no longer supports Android Office apps on Chromebook, but you can still use Microsoft Office on a Chromebook. Here’s how.
If you’re a Chromebook user, you might think that the only way you can complete your document and spreadsheet work is by using Google Docs.
However, if you need access to the options and features that Microsoft Office provides, you can use Microsoft Office on a Chromebook. You can install the progressive web app version, which is similar to using Office online, but with more features. It provides an app-like experience without the slog of installing a huge software suite.
Here’s how to use Microsoft Office on a Chromebook.
Using Microsoft Office Web Apps on a Chromebook
To use Microsoft Office on your Chromebook, all you need is the web browser it comes with. Previously you could also use the Office Android apps, but the ship has sailed. Even though you have a Chromebook that runs Android apps and can still download them, support for Office Android apps has ended. That’s probably a good thing since the web version is more straightforward.
One of the simplest ways to get Office on your Chromebook now is to install the Microsoft 365 Progressive Web App (PWA) directly from your Chrome browser. To use the web version of Microsoft Office on Chromebook, do the following:
- Launch the Chrome browser, go to Office.com, and sign in with your Microsoft account.
- Once you sign in, click the small Install Office icon that displays at the top right of the address bar and then click the Install button.
- Installation only takes a second, and the PWA app will launch. It resembles the online version of Office but works like mobile or desktop versions.
That’s all there is to it. You can resize it, get notifications, work offline, and pin the icon to the taskbar. Click the menu button on the top-left to access different available Office apps or choose one from the sidebar.
What About Android Office Apps on Chromebook?
It’s important to mention that Microsoft no longer supports Android versions of Office apps on Chromebook. Instead, support was pulled last September in place of the PWA option explained above. If you launch an Office Android app, you’ll get a message letting you know it’s not supported.
It says to use the web version for the best, up-to-date experience and gives you a link to Office.com.
The Android versions of Microsoft Office apps did scale well on Chromebooks, and using them is easy with a keyboard and touchpad. While Microsoft did end support for Android Office apps, we can still download and install them to Chromebook at the time of this article. We can then access other online files and make edits after signing in with a Microsoft account.
It’s unclear how long the apps will be available via the Play Store. So, since they are no longer receiving updates and support has ended, it’s probably best to switch to the PWA version. Not to mention, you’ll see that annoying notification shown above each time you try to launch an Android Office app.
Using Microsoft Office on Chromebook
Having the ability to access Microsoft Office on your Chromebook is helpful for many different situations. For example, it has a more robust feature set than Google Docs, and with Microsoft 365, you can work on documents or spreadsheets from anywhere.
There are some interesting tricks and features baked into your Chromebook. For example, you can run Linux apps on a Chromebook or connect your phone to it. Of course, like any tech device, they can act up. If you’re troubleshooting an issue, learn how to use the diagnostic scan tool on Chromebook.