Facebook and Microsoft have teamed up on an online document-sharing service that looks more than a little like Google Docs.
Docs.com went live on Wednesday at Facebook’s F8 conference. The site allows Facebook users to log in using Facebook Connect and create, edit, and share Microsoft Office documents with their Facebook friends. New documents will show up in a user’s news feed, just like status updates or pictures.
It’s in beta testing for now, and service was spotty in the minutes following its introduction at the conference. Microsoft is planning to launch its own online document-sharing service later this year, but Docs.com gives it a good way to test its technology within Facebook’s walls.
Google has been making a big push around online-document sharing, with Google Apps development, courting businesses large and small in an effort to get them to switch to its version of cloud-computing services. Docs.com is probably not as business-friendly, since it either requires collaborators to be Facebook friends or the document to be shared with all of Facebook, but it might make sense for smaller teams.
The project emerged from Microsoft’s FUSE Labs, set up a year ago to work on social-networking technology. Also worth noting, of course, is the $240 million Microsoft invested in Facebook in 2007.