Microsoft Brings 'Office' to Apple iPad; Available As Free Download Starting Today

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By Pavithra Rathinavel | March 28, 2014 5:45 PM EST

Microsoft has announced it will be bringing its Office Suite of Products to the iPadSatya Nadella, Microsoft CEO, introduced the Office Suite of Products for the iPad in an event in San Francisco.

Reuters
Microsoft Office for iPad

The Office Suite for the iPad will be available in the App Store starting today. This version of Office Suite comes with Word, PowerPoint and Excel. But this Office app is available only for the iPads running on iOS 7 or later. 

Users can download the App from App Store for free (freemium mode). But there is a catch, users will only view, read and present documents/data/files using Office for iPad (for free). If they want to create, improve or edit documents, they have to shell out on Office 365 subscription, which costs around $100 per year, Business Insider claimed.

An enterprise will have to dole out $60 to $264 a year (per user) depending on the size of the company and other criteria. Office is the most important product and cash-cow for Microsoft.

The main reason Microsoft ignored the iPad is to gain advantage for Windows tablets (Surface series). Unfortunately, Surface has not made the expected impact in the market. In the meantime, iPad became the ubiquitous choice for tablet users.

Microsoft was running the risk of making Office irrelevant. Even though it is late in the game, Microsoft took the right decision in deciding to bring Office to the iPad.

With Satya Nadella, Microsoft CEO leading the way, Microsoft is willing to take risk. This move is important because it indicates a mindset change at Microsoft.

According to Microsoft, Office for the iPad is not an altered version of the Windows suite but it is made brand new for the iPad.

Also Microsoft added, "Bringing Office to iPad is a way to empower people to be productive and to do more across all devices."

The Office app appears to blend smoothly on the iPad, showcasing the amount of effort Microsoft had invested in making the transition seamless, according to Business Insider.

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(Photo: Reuters / Mike Blake)
Microsoft Office for iPad
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