Wednesday, January 13, 2016

Using Naver Office on Android to open/edit/convert Hangul (.hwp) files

Naver Office
Today I'll highlight a surprisingly very easy method of converting Hangul (.hwp) files to other formats like Word .docx or Adobe .pdf that you can do right on your phone, using the free and no-account-needed Naver Office app

Also see my other posts on opening Hangul (.hwp/.hml) files.


Until now, I had been pretty content with using Netffice 24 to manage my Hangul (.hwp) files. The Android app seemed convenient for previewing .HWP files and the desktop web interface was simple enough. But one big limitation had always been that Netffice didn't let me easily convert file-types. I could always just copy/paste the text, but it was a huge problem when the file included charts, images, tables, or complex formatting. I'd have to wait until I was back on a computer with the full Hancom Office software suite.

I knew that several coworkers were using Naver Office to manage their files. I guess I was just lazy and once I'd discovered Netffice I stopped looking for a better way. But the other day a friend showed me Naver Office on his phone and I decided to give it a shot. Boy, was I missing out. Let me show you how easy it is to convert a document from .hwp to a different, more universal format. Screenshot tour follows.

Test Case: Converting an .HWP file to .Docx on Android

Here is the document I made for the test. I just threw this together in Hangul 2014 real quick.

Email the document to myself as an attachment, which is how they usually come to me. 

Opening the attachment gives me the choice to open in either of the two apps I have installed that can read HWP files: Naver Office or upload it to my Netffice 24 account. 

Here's the file in Naver Office. Looking good. 

Tap the menu icon.
Note that the whole app is English-friendly. Naver is definitely, slowly but surely, adding more and more English interfaces to their services.

The "Save as..." dialog. 
Conveniently I can either download it right to my phone or upload it to my Naver Drive cloud storage. 

Here's the list of file-types.

Let's switch back to left-alignment for a moment.
  • "ndoc" is the Naver Office format, similar to Google Docs format. Unless you're going to be editing it solely in Naver Office, don't do it. I tried opening an .ndoc file in Word, LibreOffice, and Hangul and got nothing but jibberish. 
  • "hml" is your choice for saving as a Hangul file. Why not .hwp? See my comments on "HML files" below for more on that. 
Back to the tour.

I save it as a Word .docx file. Yes, I know it might look different. Let's see just how different. 

Here is the .docx version as visible in the Office Documents Viewer app (I like this lightweight app because it can properly open Open Document formats). Looks good. 

HML Files? 

Another nice thing with this method is that you can convert other documents into Hangul files.

In Screenshot #7 above, you will have noticed that there's an option to save files as "hml". "HML" is not, you might be thinking, a typo for "HTML". Nor do they seem to be HostMonitor TestList files. Naver's description calls this "hwpml’(compatible with ‘hwp’) format" and I can verify that a .docx file saved in this .hml format did indeed open in Hangul Office 2014 on my computer, looking identical to the test document I'm using here.

I'm assuming that this HML format is to HWP what .docx was to .doc; an updated format. A quick look at the raw data of such an .hml file reveals it is definitely marked-up in XML. It begins simple enough:

<?xml version="1.0" encoding="UTF-8" standalone="yes"?><HWPML Style="embed" SubVersion="" Version="2.8"><HEAD SecCnt="1"><DOCSUMMARY><TITLE>This is a test document</TITLE><AUTHOR>Sam</AUTHOR></DOCSUMMARY><MAPPINGTABLE><BINDATALIST Count="1"><BINITEM Type="Embedding" BinData="1" Format="jpg"></BINITEM></BINDATALIST><FACENAMELIST><FONTFACE Lang="Latin" Count="3"><FONT Id="0"...

Anyway, this is a handy way to convert a file into a Hangul file. Bottom line I think: HML is the new HWP. So just double-check that your receiver's Hangul Office suite is updated to the latest 2014 version.

Final Thoughts

Overall, a great and easy method. The best thing might be that don't need a Naver account to do this, whereas Netffice needed an email/SNS login. With this, just download the app and open/covert any and all files you want, no log-in necessary. Regarding app size: Naver Office is taking up 68 MB of space on my phone. Netffice 24 only takes up 13 MB. Of course, the Netffice client is only for viewing/uploading. If you add the editing function, which requires the download of an additional app, it balloons to over 100 MB. Comparable. 

This really didn't need so many screenshots, but I hope it helped to illustrate just how easy the process is. I'm going to keep playing with it this week, and if it continues to work well I'll uninstall Netffice. Maybe I'll also take a look at the Naver Office desktop web interface. 

Finally, see my other posts on opening Hangul (.hwp/.hml) files.

Happy editing. 


  1. Thanks I am Korean working overseas. I fixed this shit like hwp issue due to you. I can't understand why they want to use this...

    1. Yes it can be annoying if you don't have (or can't use) the full Hangul Office program. But I'm glad my tip was able to help you. Good luck!