Finally, Microsoft Office is now available for iPad. On Thursday, Microsoft new Chief Executive Officer, Satya Nadella unveiled new version of Office designed for the iPad in San Francisco, in a move of pushing Microsoft’s Office suite to the most popular tablet in the market.
Office for iPad is available and free for customers who pay to subscribe to Office 365, Microsoft’s cloud-based Office program that starts at $70 per year. To be noted that non-subscribers can access a read-only version of Office for iPad.
Since people want to be able to get things done everywhere, the apps are seamlessly integrated with Microsoft’s cloud services. The apps let you access up-to-date documents in OneDrive, OneDrive for Business and SharePoint. It’s easy to pick up from where you left off, because the apps know what documents you were working on last, no matter what device you were using. Even if you don’t have an Internet connection for a while, you’ll still be able to work on the documents you’ve recently used on the iPad.
What makes these apps unique is that they strike just the right balance between being unmistakably Office and being designed for the iPad. If you use Office on a PC or Mac, the iPad apps feel very familiar, so you are comfortable and confident using these apps right away. The Ribbon layout and experience is familiar, with the most common commands under Home, and Chart commands automatically show up when you select a chart.
“In my initial remarks as CEO, I spoke about how Microsoft is embracing the new “mobile-first cloud-first” world. I’ve gotten great feedback around this declaration from customers, employees and partners who are excited to see us communicate this commitment so emphatically,” said Nadella and with his statement made it clear that connecting users to Microsoft’s cloud services, regardless of platform, has been the company’s priority. His “mobile first, cloud first” mantra seems reflected in the Office push onto the iPad.
Even as devices like smartphones and tablets overtook the PC, Microsoft delayed putting Office on competitors’ mobile platforms — leaving an opportunity for competitors like Evernote, Box and Dropbox to create go-to apps for productivity on mobile devices.