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Google Docs for Android goes native (sort of), new app letsyou capture text with camera

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Mobile editing has been around for Google Docs since November last year. Today the company has launched a native version of Google Docs for Android. That alone got me excited to try it, but aside from a new front-end and sharing options through the platform, the actual editing portion is the web version from before — which is still not as good in use as a dedicated document editor.

The biggest takeaway here is creating a new document from photo, wherein you can use your camera to capture text and Docs will translate it to editable text. It's far from perfect — in one magazine blurb, it replaced every 'w' with two 'v's instead, and it gave up entirely trying to capture this book cover for Jaron Lanier's You Are Not a Gadget — but it's certainly more convenient than trying to thumb the keys. There's a widget that let's you jump immediately into photographing a block of text from the home page, as well as giving you hotkeys for starred docs and creating new documents from scratch.

The app is free and requires Android 2.1 or better. I couldn't find it manually in the Android Market search yet, so here's the QR code (and direct link) to try it for yourself.