Thank you for your support in 2020!

 

It is a good tradition at the end of the year to reflect on what we have achieved as a team and together with our partners and the community, and remember with gratitude all the hard work that so many have put in.

Of course, this year was marked by the worldwide Corona pandemic. Early during the outbreak, we had published a statement on how far Covid-19 affected our work. Even though our structure – most of our team works remotely from the home office – meant that we were much less affected by difficulties than other companies, we too have friends, colleagues and relatives whose health were affected and also have kids we had to homeschool this year. Nevertheless, this has not affected our customer’s support, and there has been a significant up-tick in interest from people who want to collaborate on their documents without surrendering their data.

Despite all challenges, 2020 has been a very productive year at Collabora. We released important major releases for all our products – Collabora Online actually even saw two major releases, and Collabora Office arrived on Android and Chrome OS. Although conferences have only been possible online since March, we could present ourselves and our work quite well there. By moving to GitHub, a lot of fresh air and many dedicated people got in touch with Collabora Online.

Here is a summary of what we achieved together!

Collabora Online – two major releases, many improvements

The year 2020 saw two major releases of Collabora Online introducing handy new features and substantial UI and UX improvements.

Collabora Online 4.2 brings the feature rich Sidebar

In March, we introduced the Sidebar to Collabora Online 4.2. The versatile Sidebar hosts many of the most used features and provides a much improved user experience for the PC browser.

A version packed with new features

With Collabora Online 4.2 we also introduced an enhanced Colour picker with Conditional Formatting and the Function Wizard in Calc. We also added rich copy/paste, made working with images and tables much more easy and added the possibility to configure the Table of Contents. Find all the details in the Collabora 4.2 announcement.

 

The new colour picker
The Function Wizard in Calc
Collabora Online table of contents
Rich table of contents in Writer

 

Exciting 4.2 updates throughout the year

Many updates followed throughout the year:

  • April: brought improved PDF handling and support of Asian date formats in Calc in version 4.2.2.
  • May: Support for dropdown lists in form fields in ODT & DOCX and other text file formats and the handling of tabstops directly on the ruler in version 4.2.3
  • June: Multiple slide selection on slide pane, handling of tab stops, improved word count on phones and many other features arrive in version 4.2.4

Find all the exciting details in the Collabora Online 4.2 release notes!



Collabora Online 4.2.9: New options in comment threads


Collabora Online 4.2.12: Edit Chart titles from the Sidebar

 

Collabora Online 6.4 introduces the NotebookBar

 

In November, we released Collabora Online 6.4. This version introduces the (optional) new NotebookBar with its well-organized tabs and the possibility to collapse it to save space.

 

Collapse the NotebookBar for more space

 

This version also included leap in version numbering. This aligned with our desktop version and now reflects more accurately the level of development, since much of the technology is shared by both products.

 

Collabora Online 6.4 added many new features like the possibility to freeze panes in Calc, many interoperability improvements like, transparent text (in both Impress and Writer) and gradient backgrounds and better SmartArt import in Impress. Find all the details in our announcement.

Freeze rows & columns in Calc
Gradient backgrounds in Impress
Annotations in PDF documents

 

Collabora Office sees a new major release and powerful updates

In August 2020, we released Collabora Office 6.4. Our business-hardened and long term supported LibreOffice derivative brought a number of practical improvements to the workflow on desktops.

Security, encryption, PDF – new features on the Desktop

Naturally we had back-ported many of the new features to our supported Collabora Office 6.2 release as updates.

Padded Numbering was one of the results of this year’s hack week at Collabora and premiered in Collabora Office 6.2-9. Later this year it became part of Collabora Office 6.4 and LibreOffice.

Collabora Office 6.2-9: Padded numbering

In July, introducing the possibility to send encrypted PDF with Mail Merge, we added a privacy option to Collabora Office 6.2.-21. This also became available in Collabora Office 6.4 and LibreOffice.

Collabora Office 6.2-21: Send encrypted PDF with Mail Merge

Security features and PDF handling are focus topics. The option of adding visible digital signatures to PDF arrived in Collabora Office 6.4 in August.

Collabora Office 6.4 PDF signing.

Collabora implemented the Vulkan-capable rendering using the Skia library in LibreOffice 7.0. Download the slides from Luboš Luňák’s talk on this!

LibreOffice 7.0 Vulkan-capable rendering arrived

 

Collabora Office for iOS & Android

After the highly acclaimed release for iOS last year, we released Collabora Office for Android in February 2020.

Collabora Office for Android and iOS
Collabora Office brings rich editing experience to phones

This is the first time a fully function mobile office suite based on LibreOffice technology became available for Android. We have documented the long road to this point and the many supporters involved in the Collabora Office for Android and iOS credits.

An attractive layout & rich in features

Copy & paste rich text objects
Sheet editing options in context menu
Collabora Office for iOS and Android text document
Editing your text file
Collabora Office for iOS and Android presentation
Editing the content of a presentation

Thanks to the success of our mobile apps, we have expanded the LibreOffice user base by half a million mobile installations, as can be read in our annual LibreOffice infographic.

Adding more features to the mobile devices

Throughout the year we kept adding important new features to the mobile devices like tab stops & page set-up panels, improved word count, support for Asian fonts, and the possibility to open password-protected documents.

Collabora Office for Android & iOS 4.2.3: Page setup panel for text files on phones
Collabora Office for Android & iOS 4.2.4: Improved Word count on mobile devices
Collabora Office for Android & iOS 4.2.6: Writer document with different Asian fonts
Trying to open password protected files on Collabora Office for Android.
Trying to open password-protected files on Collabora Office for Android.

Version 6.4 – Another major release for mobile devices

The work on our mobile apps had its climax in the release of Collabora Office 6.4 for Android & iOS in November, which brought new features (e.g. gradient backgrounds, transparent text) from Collabora Online to mobile devices and introduced the NotebookBar to tablets.

 

 

Collabora Office for Android & iOS 6.4: The NotebookBar becomes available on tablets
Collabora Office for Android 6.4: The first Darkmode elements are beeing introduced

Collabora Office for Android & iOS are now available via the Play Store & App store. Additionally, we also offer an .apk file for download and made the repository available on F-Droid.

Collabora Office ships on Chromebooks

After making Collabora Office available on Android, this summer, we completed our multiplatform strategy by making Collabora Office available for Chromebooks as well.

The Chrome OS version is also available via the Play Store and is now also available as version branch 6.4. Interested in the technical background? Check that out in this talk:

from Jan Holesovsky’s talk “Chrome OS as a new platform” at oSLO2020 available on YouTube

Download the slides of “Chrome OS as a new platform” by Jan Holesovsky at oSLO2020

CODE 6.4 and a growing vibrant community on GitHub

 

In September, we released the Collabora Online Development Edition 6.4. This showcased all the cool new features, interoperability improvements and the new NotebookBar that would two months later become available in the enterprise edition of Collabora Online 6.4.

Collapsed NotebookBar

 

Open NotebookBar

Use the hamburger menu to access more options

The release of CODE 6.4 also marked the beginning of our initiative to lower the barriers to join the project. A few weeks later we announced moving the source code of Online to GitHub making it easier for interested people to get involved, and tackling some of the intriguing community marketing problems we faced.

The community rocks

This year we invested a lot of time, effort and passion to make Collabora Online & CODE a more accessible and fun project to work on. We created a forum for users to find support, many easy hacks and assigned developer Muhammed Kara as a community mentor, helping people getting on board. Why are we doing all this? Read about it in our FAQ!

 

Screenshot of GitHub Pulse for Collabora Online
Development Activity on Collabora Online GitHub Repository from November 27, 2020 to December 04, 2020

Regular round-ups and calls

Part of our efforts to grow a vital, transparent and welcoming community are Muhammet’s regular Community Round-ups published on our blog, as well as weekly community calls on Jitsi. We really appreciate all the new contributions we saw coming in this year from so many people, checkout their names & credits in the round-ups.

An engaged team of translators

Want to get involved in another way than contributing code? Join the engaged community of translators over on hosted Weblate to make Collabora Online available in more languages. Thank you to the dedicated team of translators.

Getting involved

It’s never been easier to get in touch with the project. You can ask questions in the Collabora Online forum or chat with us on Freenode, Matrix or Telegram or just drop us a mail at hello@collaboraoffice.com. Or use #cool_dev on Twitter or Mastodon to talk with us about Collabora Online on social media.

Important announcements, interesting figures

Our partner network hits 200

2020 has been an excellent year to close new partnerships. We now have can rely on over 200 partners from more than 50 countries, we help each other to promote FLOSS, privacy & digital sovereign solutions and re-invest the proceeds into creating great new software. Find a Collabora partner in a special field or area… or why not become a partner yourself!

CollaboraOffice.com available in 8 languages

This year, we dedicated a lot of effort to make our website and information about our product available to even more people. At this point collaboraoffice.com is available in English , German , Spanish , French , Traditional Chinese , Italian , Portuguese and Turkish . And we have only just begun…

 

Updated LibreOffice growth infographic 2020

We also updated our popular LibreOffice growth infographic. With some impressive numbers… Over 200M active LibreOffice users, over 50M pulls from the CODE Docker image, 500K installs of the Collabora Office mobile apps, and over 16K code commits from the whole community to LibreOffice. Have a look at the numbers!

 

Collabora Online as default in Nextcloud 19

In June, Nextcloud Hub 19 started to ship Collabora Online as the default office application, featuring an easy installation with just a few clicks.

Collabora Online with ownCloud Infinite Scale

In October we announced that Collabora will be integrating Collabora Online with ownCloud Infinite Scale.

Events and conferences 2020 – virtually different

Events were dominated by the global pandemic for most of the year. Sadly there were few opportunities to meet in person.

FOSDEM 2020

In February, FOSDEM 2020 could take place as the last big meeting of the open-source community with many presentations by Collabora developers.

FOSDEM 2020: Download “Bringing Collabora Online to your web app” by Michael Meeks
FOSDEM 2020: Download “LibreOffice turns 10 & what’s next” by Michaeal Meeks
FOSDEM 2020: Download “Integrate Collabora Online with web applications” by Andras Timar

Find all our FOSDEM talks in our playlist on YouTube and more slides for download in our blog.

oSLO 2020 – open SUSE & LibreOffice conference

The LibreOffice conference – this year co-organised by the open SUSE community – took place as an online event. Our team was involved with no less than 15 talks.

oSLO 2020: Download “Bringing The Notebookbar to Online” by Szymon Klos
oSLO 2020: Download “OOXML / PDF Digital Signing in Draw and elsewhere” by Miklos Vajna
oSLO 2020: Download “Implementing Vulkan-capable drawing using the Skia library” by Luboš Luňák

The talks are available in our playlist on YouTube and the complete set of slides can be found in our blog.

LibreOffice developement Workshop in Eskişehir

Collabora sponsored an impactful four-day LibreOffice development workshop during the Free Software Winter Camp at Anadolu University in Turkey. We wrote an article about the impressive results. Two participants of the workshop later went on to work GSoC projects for the LibreOffice project.

Google Summer of Code 2020

In addition to the Collabora Online community, our developers were very committed to this year’s Google Summer of Code. Read about the LibreOffice projects we mentored and the successful new implementations that resulted from these GSoC projects. Participants in the Google Summer of Code often become long-term contributors to the project.

 

Summary

In summary, it has been a busy year here at Collabora Productivity. This overview only sums up a small part of the great things we have been working on alongside the community. We have advanced our mission to make open-source rock; giving users privacy and businesses control over their data. We not only produced excellent results, but also had a good time working on these things – despite the challenging conditions that 2020 offered. If you’d like to get involved its easy to partner with us, buy from us, or get involved in the growing Collabora Online community. We have lots of plans in the pipeline for 2021 and hope there will be more possibilities to meet in person on conferences and on events. We would like to thank the whole team, particularly our great partners, and customers who make our work possible, and the community of developers and users who make it fun. We look forward to continuing the successful work with you in 2021! Have a very Happy Christmas & a peaceful New Year.

Thank You!

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Collabora’s contributions to the LibreOffice Conference 2020

Three full days dedicated to LibreOffice technology

The LibreOffice Conference 2020, this year also known as oSLO 2020, took place from 15 to 17 October 2020 as a joint online event with openSUSE. The number of participants at the online conference was roughly the same as at an on-site event. A total of over 320 participants had registered on the conference platform. Individual talks were attended by up to 150 people simultaneously. The LibreOffice community in Latin America had organized an additional track in Spanish and Portuguese. Our team contributed 16 talks (find the complete list here). Enjoy some recorded recordings, download the slides and feel free to ask further questions in our forum.

Collabora & the LibreOffice Ecosystem

Some much-acclaimed topics were the lectures by Michael Meeks, which highlighted the exciting and long-standing history of LibreOffice, and those that dealt with the relationship between profit-oriented companies and the voluntary community—and pointed out possible perspectives.

“Collabora & LibreOffice” by Michael Meeks
“Ecosystem, Branding & Investment” by Michael Meeks

Collabora Online

This year’s talks on Collabora Online had a strong focus on improving the user experience. Ashod Nakashian talked about the challenges of integrating Sidebars into Online, while Szymon Kłos explained the path to the NotebookBar, the new optional user interface. Tomaž Vajngerl showed the great new features for PDF files. Pedro Silva held a presentation on visual consistency, user experience, as well as possibilities for customization. He also showed how to join the project. Slides of his talk are also available in Portuguese (as part of the Latin-American Track). Muhammet Kara‘s presentation highlighted the new one-click option, that makes installing Collabora Online by home users much easier.

“Bringing The Notebookbar to Online” by Szymon Klos
“Improving visual consistency in Collabora Online” by Pedro Pinto Silva
“Making Online trivial to setup” by Muhammet Kara

LibreOffice & Collabora Office

These talks dealt with new functions added to LibreOffice by the Collabora team. This includes the extensive work with the SKIA graphics library, presented by Luboš Luňák, and the digital signing of files in PDF and OOXML, showcased by Miklos Vanja. Collabora Office is now also available on Chrome OS. Jan Holesovsky outlined what it took to port the Android app to Chromebooks.

“Implementing Vulkan-capable drawing using the Skia library” by Luboš Luňák
“OOXML / PDF Digital Signing in Draw and elsewhere” by Miklos Vajna
“Chrome OS as a new platform” by Jan Holesovsky

Collabora Office on Android & iOS

Our mobile apps are a lot of attention. Their huge success recently added 500K users to the LibreOffice user base. Szymon Kłos presented technical details how the LibreOffice Sidebar get re-used on phones. Tor Lillqvist focused, on the latest developments for Collabora Office on iOS, while Jan Holesovsky presented the history of online and mobile.

“Re-using the Sidebar on phones” by Szymon Kłos
“Mobile – Development on iOS” by Tor Lillqvist
“History of Online & Mobile” by Jan Holesovsky

Living on video?

Missed the conference? Would you like to watch or re-watch some talks? The sessions at the openSUSE & LibreOffice Conference have been recorded and are going to be published. We have a playlist collecting all the talks held by our developers. Find it here on YouTube. We are continuously adding the all published oSLO2020 talks there. In the meantime, please subscribe to our YouTube channel to not miss any updates from us.

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Collabora Office on mobiles supporting password protected documents and available on F-Droid


The updated release of Collabora Office for Android and iOS now supports opening password protected documents and is available for F-Droid. Thus the open source app running on your mobile devices – mind that ChromeOS is supported too – is again gaining in both features and user support.

Opening password protected documents

 

Trying to open password protected files on Collabora Office for Android.
Trying to open password protected files on Collabora Office for Android.
Just click on the document you’d like to open. In case it is a password-protected document Collabora Office will display the field for the password entry. Needless to say that this naturally works for text documents, spreadsheets and presentations alike, be it DOCX, XLSX, PPTX, ODT, ODS, ODP,or ..

Now available for F-Droid!

 

The search results for Collabora Office on F-Droid when our third party repo has been defined.
The search results for Collabora Office on F-Droid when our third party repo has been defined.
Regularly users have asked us about the availability of Collabora Office for F-Droid, the community driven platform focusing on free and open source apps for Android. And now it’s here! Currently we provide two versions: the 4.2.x release – already longer existing, and the snapshot of the unstable 6.4 line. With the latter you can help us test the latest and greatest features! Something we really appreciate, so do contact us 🙂 !
However.. searching in the F-Droid site app list, you will not find it; first you will have to add the repo. Of course the F-Droid community provides a simple and clear HowTo.
In short: you need to add the following third party repository: https://www.collaboraoffice.com/downloads/fdroid/repo/ (see the QR-code below).
Collabora Office is the first fully functional mobile document editor for F-Droid. Thanks to the F-Droid community for helping to make this possible. Shortly we’ll publish a post adding more details to the story and possibly addressing some questions too.
QR-code for CollaboraOffice repo for F-Droid

 

Where to get the new Collabora Office for mobile?

Just install or update your Collabora Office app from the Play Store or App Store. And for F-Droid, see the info just above here!

 

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Hear and discuss about Collabora’s contributions in the ecosystem at the openSUSE & LibreOffice conference 2020

From Thursday, 15th to Saturday 18th 2020 the openSUSE & LibreOffice Conference takes place as a virtual and joint event. We are glad to be one of the sponsors and to be able to contribute no less than 14 talks from our team members. To make it easier for you to keep track of all the topics, we have prepared a little overview of our talks. See you in the livestream!

⋅ Schedule Day 1, Thursday 15th 2020

Schedule Day 2, Friday 16th 2020

⋅ Schedule Day 3, Saturday 17th 2020

 

Day 1, Thursday 15th 2020

Keynote by Collabora’s Michael Meeks

10:30 UTC, Michael Meeks

Accelerating the adoption of Open Source! How does Collabora do that together with their partners and customers? About another year of investment into LibreOffice alongside the community, the ecosystem and our choices. #Collabora #Ecosystem Read more!

Bringing the Sidebars Online

12:30 UTC, Ashod Nakashian

Adding the Sidebars, with the rich and advanced editing features, to Online was challenging. Learn, how we succeeded! #OnlineUI Read more!

Bringing the NotebookBar to Online

13:30 UTC, Szymon Kłos

The story behind introducing new (optional) user interface for Online. Learn about the milestones of this new feature sponsored by Collabora. #OnlineUI Read more!

Implementing Vulkan-capable drawing using the Skia library

14:00 UTC, Luboš Luňák

Skia is a unified modern drawing across all platforms, so this is about the nice visual performance of LibreOffice and Collabora products. How is the implementation going? #LibreOfficeDev Read more!

Making Online trivial to setup

15:30 UTC, Muhammet Kara

We have recently released a big step in improving Collabora (thus LibreOffice) Online and lowered the barrier to liberating the documents of home-users. This is a quick presentation shows how the one-click installation app for Online works, and where we are at now. #OnlineInstallation Read more!

Day 2, Friday 16th 2020

Faster Jail Creation with Bind-Mount

11:00 UTC, Ashod Nakashian

A jail is an essential part of the secure work and collaborating in Collabora Online. Learn about the design and challenges of setting up jails… fast! #OnlineDev Read more!

OOXML / PDF Digital Signing in Draw and elsewhere

11:30 UTC, Miklos Vajna

LibreOffice did have support for digital signing for ODF files. Collabora extended this to OOXML files and to signing existing PDF files. Come and see where we are, what still needs to be done, and how you can help. #DigitalSigning Read more!

The history & pre-history of LibreOffice

13:30 UTC, Michael Meeks

Come and hear some of the stories of the beginning, and before the beginning. Hear a developer’s perspective on the first ten years of the project and how companies had to do with this, alongside amazing volunteers. #LibreOffice Read more!

Chrome OS as a new platform

16:00 UTC, Jan Holesovsky

Hear about the Chrome OS and the work we have made to enable the Collabora Office Android app for easy consumption on Chromebooks. #Mobile Read more!

Improvements to PDF support in Collabora Online

18:00 UTC, Tomaž Vajngerl

Recently we added possibility to open PDFs with Collabora Online, which opens the PDF in Draw as a series of embedded PDF graphics (each one in its own page). In this talk, hear about additional improvements to the PDF functionality – like searching and handling of PDF annotations. #PDF Read more!

Day 3, Saturday 17th 2020

History of Online & Mobile

12:00 UTC, Jan Holesovsky

Come and hear about the history of Collabora Online, LibreOfficeKit, Leaflet and other building bits that led to the Online as we know today. #Mobile Read more!

Re-using the Sidebar on phones

12:30 UTC, Szymon Kłos

The talk about work done by Collabora Productivity for improving UX on mobile phones. Editing on smartphones has never been easier. Hear some technical details in this talk. #Mobile #OnlineUI Read more!

Online – Improving visual consistency

13:00 UTC, Pedro Silva

For users it is most important that UI elements are easy to recognize. Hear about improvements that have been made on that front in Collabora Online. #OnlineUI #CSS Read more!

Mobile – Development on iOS

13:00 UTC, Tor Lillqvist

Important recent improvements in Collabora Office on iOS. #MobileUI #UX Read more!

Ecosystem, Branding & Investment

15:30 UTC, Michael Meeks

Setting up the project for growth. See how we can build a model whereby volunteers and ecosystem entities work alongside each other to drive the success of LibreOffice. #Ecosystem Read more!

Spanish Summit (Conferencia Latinoamericana): Collabora Online – UX

16:00 UTC, Pedro Silva

in PT/ES. For users it is most important that UI elements are easy to recognize. Hear about improvements that have been made on that front in Collabora Online. #OnlineUI #CSS Leia mais!

How to become a part of this

Very easily. The attendance openSUSE and LibreOffice conference 2020 is free of charge. Just subscribe to the conference website, meet the community and join three days of discussion about the latest developments with regard to LibreOffice and openSUSE. The complete schedule of the virtual conference is here at your disposal.

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Collabora Online and mobile now with full CJK support

Starting from today’s release more users around the globe will benefit from Collabora Office on iOS and Android! With the just released version 4.2.6 there is full support of CJK fonts and also the user interface has various related improvements.
Fonts available on your mobile device for Chinese, Japanese, Korean, Hindi, Arabic and other scripts, will now be used by the app. This gives many new users the native usability they need, the privacy and control over their data with a quality product they expect from a Collabora.

The latest Collabora Online has some related improvements too.

 

Which scripts are now supported

The updated Collabora Office mobile apps do now support a wide range of scripts and fonts natively available on your phone. Namely, those are:

  • Chinese (Mandarin, simplified)
  • Chinese (Mandarin, traditional)
  • Hindi
  • Japanese
  • Korean
  • Thai
  • Vietnamese
Example of Writer document with different Asian fonts

Improvement in fontconfig

The support for Chinese, Japanese, Korean, Arabic, and other previously unsupported scripts, could be added thanks to a performance fix in fontconfig. This allows resulted in a much improved loading time of the app. Thanks to Behdad Esfahbod (branch faster), fontconfig authors and contributors, and Michael Weghorn (for updating fontconfig) for their work on this!

All info

Do you want to learn more about the mobile office apps by Collabora Productivity? Find all the relevant info summarized on the product page. A good reference for those interested in the detailed development progress of Collabora Office for Android & iOS are the latest release notes. If you want to find out about the history of the apps and the people and entities involved, we suggest you take a look at our detailed chronological credits article.

For information about Collabora Online, see the release notes and the initial announcement of version 4.2.

Get Collabora Online

Collabora Online is the business ready supported product for professional use. Collabora products are built on LibreOffice technology. Collabora is the creator of LibreOffice online.

Get Collabora Office

Collabora Office for Android and iOS enables editing of documents on the go and is developed with your privacy in mind. Download it for free from the App Store of from Google Play.

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