Office For iPad Would Be Worth $2.5 Billion To Microsoft, Per Year

officeforipad

Rumors (and credible leaks) about Microsoft Office for iPad have been swirling for at least a year, but so far, the best you can do is load up Office 365 in your iPad’s web browser. If you want a tablet that natively runs office, you have to buy a Surface.

There’s a reason for that. Microsoft knows that Office is the biggest reason why someone might buy a Surface over an iPad. But by refusing to release Office for iPad, Microsoft is leaving a lot more money on their table than they are taking from it in Surface orders, at least according to one analyst.

Accoording to a report from Morgan Stanley analyst Adam Holt, if Microsoft priced Office for iOS at $60, they would sell it to 30% of iPad users. That means that by 2014, Microsoft could be generating about $2.5 billion per year on Office for iPad.

That’s a lot of money. Right now, it’s certainly a lot more money than Microsof’s making off the Surface.

The question is, is Adam Holt right? Would you buy Microsoft Office for iPad for $60? Let us know in the comments.

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  • Steve Ballantyne

    Yes, i’d definitely buy Office for iPad… it’s long overdue. Unfortunately Microsoft are being arrogantly complacent here by not releasing it… if such software isn’t released for iOS devices soon, there could be a new standard in software for businesses emerge as a result. – We’re only forced to use word, excel & powerpoint due mainly to business/mainstream reasons.

  • mhuntoon

    I’d definitely buy Office for iPad, although I was hoping to see a lower proposed price point (who wouldn’t?). I’d definitely bite the bullet and make the purchase, though.

  • einsnico

    I’d buy it as well but if they charge more than $60 I’ll stick to Google Docs lol

  • TechBell

    Don’t buy it. People who buy a Surface RT are getting it because they’re enamored with the Microsoft eco-system and just want it; not only because it comes loaded with Office. On the other hand, iOS devices have been around for five years now – all of them without Microsoft Office – and it hasn’t made a damn bit of difference. Do you hear anyone pleading for Office for iOS? You don’t.

  • markrlangston

    @TechBell : You’re right that Apple’s managed to sell tons of iPads sans MS Office but if Office were available it would only compound the iPad’s dominance provided MS didn’t gimp it so much to the point of frustration. Actually, doing a bad job could give Office and MSFT a black eye bringing down consumer confidence.

    Frankly, I don’t think MSFT is capable of building a solid MS Office experience for touch. If they could it would’ve been released with the original Surface thereby negating the need for a gimped Desktop that’s only good for one thing.

    The fact that Metro doesn’t have an explorer window to manage files, yet Desktop mode does, is proof enough that MSFT has no earthly idea what they’re doing. And as the article stated, making a competent version of Office for iOS is a gold mine. But obviously it also means diverting the need to buy a Surface.

  • Bazza1

    Office for iOS is definitely needed if Microsoft is hoping it’s Mac users will stick with their desktop product rather than go with Apple’s own, at significantly less.

    That said, as someone who has already been gouged by Microsoft for their desktop version, there is no way I would entertain paying $60 for a mobile version, especially if it (as rumours have it) needs to then also be tied to a $99 / year Office365 account. The product needs to be stand-alone, the users needs to be able to access / save to various cloud services (like Dropbox, Box, et al) and be able to create and save locally.

    Microsoft also needs to look at breaking the Office Suite into its component parts for sale in iTunes (as Apple’s iWork does), with a competitive price to that – currently $9.99 per – and should offer that product at a significant discount (if not free) to licensed users of their desktop product.

    Otherwise, iOS users will simply find other (and often free) alternatives, denying Microsoft access to its own Office users and the millions of others.

About the author

John BrownleeJohn Brownlee is a Contributing Editor. He has also written for Wired, Playboy, Boing Boing, Popular Mechanics, VentureBeat, and Gizmodo. He lives in Boston with his girlfriend and two parakeets. You can follow him here on Twitter.

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