Microsoft’s Office suite is the most popular word processing, presentation and spreadsheet bundle of applications especially for desktop computers. Sometime last month, rumors started going round that Microsoft was prepping a new edition of Microsoft Office for Android Smartphones and tablets. It was then a baseless rumor but we are certain now that Office suite for Android and iOS is in he works and will be coming to the stores in May next year.
According to Verge.com, sources close to Microsoft say that the company is developing the new applications dubbed Office Mobile and will let users open and read MS word, PowerPoint and Excel files on mobile devices. However, to be able to edit these documents, users will have to subscribe to Office 365 subscription which is a new feature to license Microsoft Office products starting with Office 2013. These applications will provide basic editing functionalities, but nothing close to what the desktop application offers. Users with iOS devices though are in luck because they may get the application first in January of February 2013.
Even with free read-only versions, Microsoft Office applications remain the most admired and used document applications today but their subscription model maybe something to be worried about, especially for mobile users. Last month, a press release out of Microsoft Office in Czech republic confirmed the fact that Office Mobile is under development and it was projected to be released in February next year.
There are currently a number of third party applications on Google Play Store that provide document viewing and editing capabilities including DataViz’s Documents To Go which was developed with Microsoft’s Office To Go as basis. This office document viewer and editing suite supports opening and editing word, PowerPoint, Excel and PDF files.
There is still about 6 to 7 months before Microsoft eventually releases Office Mobile for Android, we just have to hope that the applications will offer much more functionality than what we already have in the market now. We would like to have applications with editing capabilities so good that working right from an Android device will be uncomplicated.