Microsoft finally releasing an Office app for the iPad

Office for iPadMicrosoft has announced that they have released a version of Office for iPad users, nine months after also launching an iPhone mobile app.

This has been a long time coming. Microsoft is notorious for refusing to share their software, remaining isolated as they attempted to push the Windows Phone into a more dominant market position. The last thing they wanted was to give a major competitor access to one of their most popular pieces of software.

But give it over, they have. In June 2013, they provided an iPhone version that was more or less useless. The small screen wasn’t very compatible, and there were better note taking apps out there that better utilized the smartphone’s features. But their launch of the iPad version, which really should have been first, is much better.

Every day we hear from you how important it is to have a great productivity experience on all the devices you use. We take that very seriously – we know that means you want the authentic experience of Office, made right for the device you’re using, a statement on their official Office Blogs said.

We reimagined Office on the iPad, while retaining what people love about Office. We hope you’ll be as pleased with the results as we are. In the future, we will bring Office apps to the Windows Store and other popular platforms.

If you are interested in their OneDrive service, and use it as your primary cloud, there will be an additional benefit. The Office app will sync with OneDrive to offer full cloud integration. The downside is that it, as expected, will not be compatible with any other cloud service.

In the end, this is kind of a mixed bag, results-wise. Yes, it is great for people who already use Office and OneDrive. If you expected this to be free, well it’s not entirely as is the Android version. As Microsoft likes to say you can “read, view and present documents, spreadsheets and presentations” for free, but if you want to edit and do more you have to have an Office 365 subscription (which starts at $99.99 per year).

For now, I think we should be impressed that Microsoft chose to work with Apple. I also heard that soon an Android tablet version of Office might also be on the way.

Source: Office Blogs

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