I like web-based office apps such as Google Docs and Zoho Office for a few reasons. For one thing, I tend to use several different computers on a regular basis and if all of your docs are stored online, you don’t have to waste time sending yourself copies or synchronizing your documents across different machines.
But to be honest, I sometimes find myself firing up a web-based word processor or spreadsheet even when I’m at my primary work computer and just don’t feel like using OpenOffice.org. That’s because web-based apps like Zoho Sheet and Adobe Buzzword load fast, offer many of the features I need, and don’t litter my desktop with documents I’ll have a hard time keeping track of.
Now Zoho has rolled out a new killer feature: universal search. It might not seem like that big a deal, but you can now search all of your Zoho files at once instead of searching app by app. Since Zoho has almost 2-dozen web apps including a spreadsheet, word processor, presentation app, chat application, notebook, Wiki, project manager, and email app, that makes it a lot easier to do pretty much everything in the cloud and find any document, email, or message you’re looking for in just a few seconds.
Of course, you can also search in Google Docs… but that will only search your text, spreadsheet, and presentation files. Searching in Gmail will only bring up email messages. And so forth. It’s kind of surprising that a company that wasn’t known primarily for search managed to beat Google to a universal search tool for your personal web-based apps. But now that Zoho is doing it, maybe Google and other web office/web app makers will follow suit.
You can check out a video overview of Zoho’s new search feature after the break.