Microsoft set the Internet ablaze yesterday with the announcement that all of the Office mobile apps would be free to download on iOS and Android phones and tablets, but there are a few provisions worth noting. PCWorld got in touch with Microsoft in order to find out exactly which features would be free for all mobile users and which would require a subscription to Office 365. More →
Microsoft under Satya Nadella truly is a new company. Microsoft on Thursday announced that you’ll now be able to use its Microsoft Office mobile apps on your iPhone or iPad even if you don’t have a subscription to Office 365 — in other words, Office for iOS just became a free mobile app. And don’t think that Microsoft has left Android users out in the cold either, as the company says that Office for Android tablets will be free to use without an Office 365 subscription in the near future as well. More →
The Surface mini project isn’t as dead as you might think, Neowin says, reporting that the device is real and may still launch in the future. The publication has confirmed that the mini tablet was excluded from the official Surface Pro 3 announcement following an “eleventh hour” decision – which apparently means as late as two days before the keynote – although it’s not clear whether or not Stephen Elop is to blame. However, it looks like Windows is waiting for one key feature to resurrect the Surface mini. More →
Gee, do you think there was a bit of pent-up demand for Microsoft’s Office software on the Apple iPad? Microsoft announced on Thursday that its assorted Office apps for the iPad had been downloaded 12 million times in just the last week alone. While everyone expected Office for iPad would be a hit, this is still an impressive number, especially when you consider that Microsoft’s Office apps have also regularly been among the top grossing apps on the App Store as well. This is obviously good news for Microsoft, whose Office software has long been a major cash cow that only figures to become even more profitable now that it’s on the world’s most popular tablet.
Why Microsoft has held out for so long on releasing its Office suite for the iPad is anyone’s guess but Reuters reports that the company is coming under even greater pressure to bring it to market because many businesses who use tablets are finding other ways to get productivity software. Reuters cites the example of “Artivest Holdings Inc, a New York-based financial services startup that sells alternative investment products” and that uses tablet-tailored app Quip to meet its word processing needs. More →
Although Microsoft has had its share of problems breaking into the mobile market, the company’s Office software is still the world’s most-used productivity software and is still a huge source of revenue. Per The Verge, outgoing Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer told the Gartner Symposium/ITxpo on Tuesday that his company was in the midst of developing a “touch-first” version of Office that would release on the iPad shortly after releasing on Windows 8.1. Ballmer gave no information on when the touch-centric version of Office would be available and would only say that it’s a work “in progress.” Microsoft released a mobile version of Office for the iPhone and Android smartphones this year so it was only a matter of time before the company released a version of the software that’s tailored specifically to tablets.
The days when Microsoft would wait a whopping three years to push out big changes to its Office productivity software have come to an end. Bloomberg reports that Microsoft now plans to use its extensive cloud resources to push out updates to Office once every three weeks, a sea change for the company that fits in well with its pledge to issue big yearly updates for Windows. Jeff Teper, corporate vice president for Microsoft’s Office division, also tells Bloomberg that “within a year, users of Internet-based versions of Office productivity software, as well as e-mail, telephony and collaboration tools, will have parts of their software refreshed weekly.”
Microsoft is starting to get creative when it comes to selling Windows-based tablets. We learned late last week that the company had started giving away keyboards for the Surface RT for a limited time and now The Verge reports that Microsoft is throwing in Office 2013 for free on smaller Windows 8 tablets. Microsoft said that while it’s up to OEMs to bundle the software, customers who buy 7-inch or 8-inch Windows tablets in the coming months should expect most of them to come with Word, Excel, PowerPoint and OneNote already installed. Smaller Windows 8 tablets won’t have access to Outlook 2013, however Microsoft did say that they’ll likely come installed with the less comprehensive Outlook RT that’s now included for free on Windows RT tablets.
If you buy a license for Microsoft Office 2013, be warned: You may only be allowed to use it on one machine, no matter the circumstances. Both InfoWorld’s Woody Leonhard and The Age’s Adam Turner have done good jobs of combing through the details of Microsoft’s (MSFT) latest Office licensing terms and have found that Office users can get “a perpetual license for the Office 2013 programs” that only covers one computer. This means that if your PC breaks and you have to buy a new one, you may not be able to transfer your Office 2013 license to your new machine and may have to pay for it all over again. More →
Following the huge loss reported by major mobile partner Nokia, Microsoft posted its fiscal third-quarter results on Thursday following the close of the market. Wall Street was expecting the software giant’s earnings to slide 7% year-over-year to $0.57 per share on sales of $17.18 billion, up 5% from the same quarter in 2011. Microsoft reported earnings of $0.60 per share, beating estimates, and revenue came in at $17.41 billion. Operating income totaled $6.37 billion, up 12% year-over-year. Read on for more. More →
Images of Microsoft’s product roadmap for partners have leaked onto the web. The documents were posted on Twitter by Maartin Visser, who discovered the them on the Microsoft Partner Network. The purported roadmap reveals new details regarding the next versions of upcoming products, including Office 15, Internet Explorer 10 and Windows Phone. Microsoft’s IE 10 could be out by mid-year according to the roadmap, possibly around around the same time as the Windows 8 Release Candidate. Office 15 is expected to enter its beta-testing phase midway through 2012 and become available in the early part of 2013. Window Phone will see “future investments” somewhere around the third quarter of this year, possibly indicating an Apollo launch. A second image can found after the break. More →
OnLive, a company known for its cloud-based gaming service, has been pushing its “Desktop App” for iPad and select Android tablets. The program uses virtualization technology to create a remotely hosted, fully functional version of Windows 7 desktop — Microsoft’s Office suite included — on a tablet, and has been met with a great deal of praise. Microsoft, however, cannot be counted among the service’s fans. In a post on the company’s blog, the software giant expressed concerns that the app may be in violation of its licensing agreements and is “actively engaged with OnLive with the hope of bringing them into a properly licensed scenario, and we are committed to seeing this issue is resolved.” OnLive did not immediately respond to a request for comment. More →
Microsoft is confirmed to be working on a version of its wildly popular Office productivity suite for Apple’s iPad, and The Daily managed to get some hands on time with the highly anticipated software ahead of its release. Microsoft Office for iPad will bring Word, Excel and PowerPoint functionality to Apple’s tablet — presuming the app is approved by Apple — and it is unclear if Microsoft has plans to add additional Office applications in the future. The app has a similar look to Microsoft’s OneNote app for iOS, which borrows largely from the Metro-themed Office software on the Windows Phone platform. The Daily’s report states that Microsoft plans to submit Office for iPad to Apple for approval in the coming weeks, though a firm time frame was not provided.