Microsoft Brings Word, PowerPoint And Excel To iPad

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The day has finally come. During a keynote today in San Francisco, Microsoft unveiled the Office suite for iPad. Rumors have said that Word would be unveiled for Apple’s tablet this month, but that’s not all; Microsoft has also released versions of PowerPoint and Excel.

Microsoft is taking the freemium approach in the App Store. Office for iPad apps are free to download, but you can only read and present. To edit, you need an Office 365 subscription. Office for iPhone has also been updated to be free for noncommercial use.

Not bad.

Not bad.

Early reviews of Office on the iPad are surprisingly positive, as many seem impressed with how robust the software is to use.”Office on iPad feels powerful, personal, and usable for the most part, but you can’t do absolutely everything on the go,” says The Verge. “We couldn’t find a way to add a video to a PowerPoint presentation, for example.”

“Here, Microsoft was careful to take advantage of the iPad’s extra screen real estate: whereas the iPhone version wouldn’t even let you add rows in the middle of a spreadsheet, the iPad edition includes advanced features like Sparklines and author blocking, which only power users might appreciate,” according to Engadget.

Each Office app features a slimmed down version of the dreaded ribbon interface, but it seems like Microsoft has prioritized editing tools to make the workflow easier on the iPad. “I want to do my best work on Windows and I want to do my best work on iPad and I want all of that to accrue to Office,” said Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella to Re/code. “It’s really about being able to go where the opportunity is. If we can serve customers who expect our Office 365 everywhere … we will do well.”

Word, PowerPoint, and Excel for iPad can be downloaded now in the App Store.

  • Greg Lawhorn

    So let me understand this. I already own Microsoft Office, no subscription required. Three iPad apps will cost me $99 per year, ad infinitum, ad nauseam.

    Of course, I can read my documents for nothing, which is ok.

    But if I want to change a word here or there? $99 bucks a year.

    Gonna have to think about this . . .

  • sonoftroy

    I despise the subscription model. I want to own what I buy, not pay rent. There are plenty of great alternatives that allow me to access and edit a huge variety of document formats (MS versions included). So no, I will not be paying $99 rent on this.

  • freemdoom

    “Office for iPad has also been updated to be free for noncommercial use.”
    What does that mean. you just said that didn’t you? Or did you mean to say Mac?

    • sracer

      I think he meant “Office for iPhone”.

  • Jrodd

    This subscription model is a big load of junk. I don’t care that I always get the latest access to Microsoft office versions and features I don’t need, $99 A year is a rip off. Maybe $20 A year or just let me buy the whole thing outright. I can see the priceing for business but for home users come on , people used to pay $80-120 every 3-5 Years for a new version not every year.

  • Kr00

    Clearly the losses MS have had due to the Surface debacle has cost them and the only way to make money is to turn to subscription apps. Well done to all at redmond, you’ve just join adobe as being the least inventive company on the face of the planet. So how does this compare to Apples iWork/iCloud model? It doesn’t.

About the author

Alex HeathAlex Heath has been a staff writer at Cult of Mac for three years. He is also a co-host of the CultCast. He has been quoted by the likes of the BBC, KRON 4 News, and books like "ICONIC: A Photographic Tribute to Apple Innovation." If you want to pitch a story, share a tip, or just get in touch, additional contact information is available on his personal site. Twitter always works too.

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