Of Microsoft’s Office productivity suite and its integration with the iOS platform, this perhaps has been a topic of discussion ever since the iPad had burst into the scene. However, we seem to be heading to something concrete on this finally, what with the latest on this coming from ZDNet claiming such a thing is being actively deliberated and it could be expected very soon.
The issue though is tricky for Microsoft considering the cash cow that the Office software suite has been for the Redmond based company over the years. Unleashing the same on competing platforms carries the risk of undermining Microsoft’s own Windows platform; that too at a time when the latter is having to re-position itself in a fast changing computing scenario. But then, having Microsoft Office suite on the iPad tablet range will also open up a huge market segment, which can also translate to another steady source of income.
“You’ll see us be thoughtful about how and when we bring what applications to what platforms,” said Tami Reller, vice president of marketing at Microsoft while speaking at the Goldman Sachs Technology and Internet Conference. “We come at it from that angle, which is, ‘What businesses do we need to drive forward?’ That’s how we will make the decision.”
However, what is not known is how Microsoft is going to charge for using the Office suite though the Office 365 subscription model that Microsoft has introduced off late seems to be the best bet. Right now there is a free MS Office app that is available for the iPhone which allows for limited editing opportunity but none for the iPad. Also, what cannot be denied is that using MS Excel can be chore on the smaller display of the iPhone but can be much better when viewed on the larger displays of the iPad or even the proposed iPad Pro or the new crop of Samsung Pro series of tablets.