Chrome Office Viewer lets you open Office Files in Chrome directly with a single click

Similar to the way you can view PDF files in Chrome, what if you had the capability of viewing Office documents too from the Web right in your browser? Chromebook users certainly have an upper-hand in this regard. They can open Microsoft Word, Excel, and PowerPoint files directly in their browser but what about Windows users? This now changes as the same functionality has been extended to Chrome on Windows and Mac via Chrome Office Viewer. The extension makes it possible to view Word documents, Excel spreadsheets, and PowerPoint slide decks right inside the Google Chrome browser.

Chrome Office Viewer

Chrome Office Viewer proves a boon especially for the Windows users who regularly need to open Microsoft Office documents in the browser.

  • All a user needs to do is go this page and hit the ‘Add to Chrome’ button.

Chrome Office viewer

  • Once done, a confirmation message is displayed before the downloading of Chrome Office Viewer begins.

confirm extension

  • When the Installation process of the Chrome Office Viewer (Beta) extension gets completed, download a file supported – Word, Excel or PowerPoint (any Office Document) and right click to it and press open in new tab to view file.


  • The highlight of the application is that in addition to saving you time, Chrome Office Viewer protects you from malware delivered via Office files. It includes a specialized sandbox to impede attackers who use compromised Office files to try to steal private information or monitor your activities.
  • The extension is capable of opening a 1997-2013 Office file on the web, directly in Chrome – identical to Chrome’s PDF Viewer.

Formats supported:


Please note: This extension is already installed on Chrome OS and does not currently support editing. To edit, please import files into Google Drive or use your preferred editing software.

If you are unable to install this extension and get the following error message – “This application is not supported on this computer. Installation has been disabled.”, try the following suggestions:

  1. Make sure your file is supported. Your device can open .doc, .docx, .xls, .xlsx, .ppt, and .pptx files. If your file’s format isn’t supported, trying uploading the file to Google Docs or another web app to view the file online.
  2. Make sure the Native Client plug-in is enabled. Chrome devices use this plug-in to open Office documents. To check this plug-in on your device, go to about:plugins and make sure “Native Client” is marked as enabled.
  3. Reload the tab that contains your file.
  4. Close and re-open the Files app, then try opening your file again.
  5. Restart your Chrome device, then try opening the file again.


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The author Hemant Saxena is a post-graduate in bio-technology and has an immense interest in following Windows, Office and other technology developments. Quiet by nature, he is an avid Lacrosse player. Creating a System Restore Point first before installing a new software, and being careful about any third-party offers while installing freeware is recommended.

One Comment

  1. Arun Kumar

    Editing while collaboration is problem. I shifted to SkyDrive due to that. Even w/o the above tool, the only option to edit was to convert the file into google format for editing. And instead of making changes in the original, it often leaves out the changes as a different file – which again has to be shared. This is with docs created in MS Word and edited in Google Drive. Don;t know about other file formats.

    But when it comes to file types, no doubt Google Drive supports max. For eg, .html won’t open on SkyDrive but opens easily on Drive without having to download it.

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