back to article First iOS, now Android to get fondleslab Office ahead of Windows

Microsoft is reportedly developing a tablet-optimized version of Office for Android devices, and it is scheduled to arrive before the Windows version. Veteran Redmond beat writer Mary Jo Foley cited company sources in reporting that Microsoft was planning to release a Windows tablet-optimized version of Office in the Spring of …


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  1. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Of course Android will come before Windows

    It's a great, big, bloody new revenue stream.

    1. Don Jefe

      Re: Of course Android will come before Windows

      Right? This isn't rocket science.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Of course Android will come before Windows

      And there are already a multitude of free and inexpensive office apps that show Android and iOS users that they don't need Microsoft Office anymore.

      "Why would I need Office, when this does it for free?" "I wonder if I can get it on my home computer, oh yes, it's free there too...."

      Microsoft Office is going down the pan like all other Microsoft product lines, and this is why Microsoft are rushing to get in there with something....

      1. mmeier

        Re: Of course Android will come before Windows

        Until the user needs to run that company standard PowerPoint presentation and it does not work or at least not properly. Same for that Macro-heavy standard Excel sheet, the Word-optimized RTF document....

        Privat use MAY work, company use more often than not does not work. And many people use privatly what they use in the company. Because computers and software are tools for reaching a target. Any why learn a second set of tools when I already know one that works and isn't all that costly?

  2. Anomalous Cowturd

    But they said it was easy...

    to port software between Windows 8.1, Windows phone 8, and Windows RT.

    Would they really have lied?


    1. Charles Manning

      Understanding a Corporation

      In a big corp like Microsoft, there are many business units. What they do does not make sense if viewed from outside, just from inside.

      They do not really cooperate. In fact they compete for resources, premium office space, having their head patted by the CEO,...

      The Office group are interested in making money from Office.

      The Windows group are interested in making money from Windows.

      The Office group realise that they can put A effort into developing for Android and get B revenue.

      They also realsise that they can put in W effort into Windows and get Y revenue.

      Even if W is much greater than A, B is much, much, greater than Y. Therefore the spreadsheet tells them to do Android before even considering to Windows.

  3. CrosscutSaw

    yes of course

    Because nobody owns a Windows tab!

    Interesting to see them act like they actually thought this through...

    1. Blitterbug

      Re: Because nobody owns a Windows tab!

      Funny comment - but naughty. I love my Surface Pro (got it a bit reduced when the Pro 2 came out). Dumped Metro, obviously, but could really do with a touchy-feelie Office. Sadly though, it'll be the 365 rental model when it arrives. <sigh>

    2. Hellcat

      Re: yes of course

      Can't say I'm on the edge of my chair over this touch-optimised Office, as the version that came with RT works fine for anything I've ever tried to do. Since the surface devices make up the majority of Win tabs, and they have touchpad/keyboard covers, it makes sense for Microsoft to work on a version for iOS and Android before Win8.1.

      Still, unless they sort out their single-sign-on it will all be a moot point as I'll be going back to google!

    3. Matt_payne666

      Re: yes of course

      the version of office supplied on my Surface RT works more than well enough for me (below average office user) and for all intents and purposes is identical to Office on my real windows PC - I have a type cover (as do all the other (few) surface users I have encountered) so I can see the logic in releasing android and iOS versions first...

      Touch optimised is nice, but (for me) the full versions are more familiar and more featureful - my point, full one note is used in preference to touch one note for all but the most rudimental of noting tasks, muscle memory and familiarity are a boon to my shot to bits old brain

    4. mmeier

      Re: yes of course

      More likely because the main target for MS Office (Business) did buy Windows tablet pc that can make use of MS Office 2013 quite easily because they come equiped with WACOM/NTRIG/Atmel stylus. And THAT is supported in Office since XP times in a way far supperior to what any touchy toy can offer.

  4. king of foo

    software company sells... SOFTWARE

    Calmer heads prevail at last. First friendship and now this. Great news.

    I really hope they use the same good judgement when they set the pricing model... I want to buy this just like any other app on google play. NO SUBSCRIPTION and no DEVICE LOCKING. If I change my phone I want to be able to download it to my new one at no extra cost.

    There are some good alternatives out there already so I really hope this is a full on android port of office - ie ability to run macros for example.

    1. Androgynous Crackwhore

      Re: software company sells... SOFTWARE I really hope this is a full on android port of office - ie ability to run macros for example.

      Get a grip! We're not even allowed to run full office on MSFT's own phablet walled garden! It'll just be more taster smack to keep the users coming back for the hard stuff.

  5. ewozza

    Microsoft Office is in Big Doo Doo

    If you haven't tried Google Office lately, you should. I recently switched banks, and forgot to update Microsoft 365, which caused my subscription to be suspended temporarily. While I was waiting for Microsoft to sort out my new bank details, I tried Google Office.

    I was astounded - as easy, if not easier to user than Microsoft Office, ability to download high quality compatible word or PDF documents, and it was all free. Google does some kind of professional version, but if you just want to edit a few documents, you can function perfectly well with the free version.

    Guess what - I cancelled my subscription to Microsoft 365, and I have no plan to reactivate it. I don't see the point of paying the M$ tax, when I can get everything I need for free.

    1. Fuzz

      Re: Microsoft Office is in Big Doo Doo

      Um, did you notice you get the web components of office 365 for free also? You only have to pay if you're a) a business or b) you want the full install versions of the office programs so you can use them without an Internet connection.

    2. HipposRule

      Re: Microsoft Office is in Big Doo Doo

      M$ - how original

      1. dogged

        Re: Microsoft Office is in Big Doo Doo

        > M$ - how original

        It's mandatory for anyone who still bears a grudge that they can't understand and will, without provocation, incoherently proclaim about something that happened in 1993.

        1. Arctic fox

          @dogged Re:"It's mandatory for anyone......" Be fair now, he didn't use.........

          ..............."Windoze" even once. Nary a mention of CONVICTED MONOPOLIST either. (Do please excuse the use of caps, I was just trying to convey the flavour of the oeuvre).

    3. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Microsoft Office is in Big Doo Doo

      Free except for the ads which are coming from Google electronically reading your Documents.

      Oh do you work for Google? Sounds like you do.

    4. Tom 13

      Re: Microsoft Office is in Big Doo Doo

      First off, it has never been called Google Office. It has gone by the name Google Documents, and they now call it Google Drive.

      Next up, while I will grant that Open Office and/or Libre Office are decent replacements for most of MS Office, The Google product is nowhere near ready for prime time. It works in a pinch. Yes, I use it to tabulate the division of our grocery bill, but only because I want to be able to easily access the documents from any computer. Even for a simple grocery bill there were a number of things Excel does better.

  6. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    Still, the plan shows just how far we've come from the days when Apple had to sold Microsoft a chunk of its stock just to get an Office port.

    should perhaps read;

    Still, the plan shows just how far we've come from the days when Apple had to sell Microsoft a chunk of its stock just to get an Office port.

    And, not quite. But hey, if that makes you feel smart...

  7. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    whatever next?

    Microsoft making PS4 games because of the massive Xbox one flop...

  8. Sean Timarco Baggaley

    Of course, there's also the fact that the Android and iOS touch interfaces aren't that dissimilar, so it's probably easier for them to do.

    As others have pointed out, Windows Surface Pro tablets already have full-fat Office, while Windows Surface RT tablets have a slightly cut-down one. Both tablets are often bundled with a keyboard+trackpad cover, so the touch-screen element is moot: any Office power user will be using keyboard shortcuts all the time anyway. A touch UI for these platforms is a nice-to-have. For the likes of the iPad and Galaxy Notes, a touch UI is an absolute necessity.

    And no, Google Apps, Libre/OpenOffice, and their ilk, barely compete with the late, unlamented and unloved Microsoft Works suite. They're not even close to feature parity with the full Microsoft Office suite. The latter is also a complete development platform. Its customisability and extensibility are so far beyond those other applications that it's actually a stretch to even refer to them as "competition".

    If Google Apps is good enough for your needs, you were never in Microsoft's target market for Office in the first place. Why would you even buy an Office 365 subscription?

    1. Shaha Alam

      "If Google Apps is good enough for your needs, you were never in Microsoft's target market for Office in the first place. Why would you even buy an Office 365 subscription?"

      nice try. Microsoft's target market for office has always included:

      - anyone willing to pay*

      - those who're unaware of free alternatives

      *get fleeced

  9. cambsukguy

    Free Office/Onenote on my phone...

    I can even talk my notes into it.

    Free Office/Onenote on my RT tablet, it has a keyboard as mentioned earlier, touch might be cool in a future metro app but I hardly need it.

    Old, real Office on my old Laptop, complete with free compatibility software that means I can use 10-year-old software to edit current docs.

    Free Office/Onenote access on the web, anywhere within reason.

    Not really a problem, not really expensive, no need to bother with possible alternatives.

  10. bigtimehustler

    Microsoft is just doing what every other app development house does, target the biggest markets first. I admit it looks odd when the small market to do last is your own, but Microsoft is well known for operating in silos of operation, so the windows guys are probably pissed off about it and the app developers for office are probably sticking up their finger and telling them the market it too small.

  11. Medixstiff

    Has anyone thought...

    That perhaps it's because it gives M$ more time to test Office on Windows 9 tablet's prior to releasing RTM Windows 9 to manufacturers for their testing etc?

  12. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    You wonder how MS are planning to sell their Surface, if they remove its key selling point by offering office for all other tablets first.

    1. mmeier

      Both Surface and Surface/Pro already have an Office. Can not say for the RT version how good/bad it is since I consider RT "waste of resources" but Office 2013 runs just fine on all tablet pc and convertibles I had a chance to test it on. There are limits on how many of the components you can run on a "CTrail" Atom due to the memory limit. But running one component + Outlook at a time worked fine. Typical "netbook" problem.

      But 4GB Baytrails (Fujitsu Q) and all i-Series (Lenovo, Fujitsu, Acer. Samsung, Asus) with 4+GB worked fine no matter what generation or spec (M/ULV/Y) of i-Series CPU we used and how many of the components.

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