How to Get Microsoft Office on Your IPad



In an article I wrote yesterday, I discussed the stinginess of Microsoft to not provide an Office app for iPad users. Of course, there were those who disagree with me and think that Microsoft’s strategy is a successful one. I still stick by my words in that article (titled “Why Microsoft Office for IPad is a Good Idea”) that Microsoft is losing billions of dollars in revenue and profit due to its stubbornness; at the same time, what can a consumer do about it? Not much.

I decided to test a little experiment in my apartment today, which you can find in the video posted below:

In order to get Microsoft Office on your iPad, you will need to purchase two things: (1) Microsoft Office for Mac OS and (2) Windows 8 Metro Testbed from the App Store. I purchased Microsoft Office 2011 two years ago when it first arrived for Mac OS, and I had to purchase it separately from my MacBook Pro. It was priced around about $115-$120, so it is a rather steep purchase. In any case, I enjoy Microsoft Office and use it daily for blogging, research, papers, and so on. The Windows 8 Metro Testbed can be purchased from the App Store for $49.99. I bought it a year ago when the price tag was around $35.00. All you need to do is download the Windows 8 Testbed application on your iPad. Yes, note from before you download that this will not give you Windows 8 OS; rather, the point of downloading this application is to provide access to your desktop. In other words, Windows 8 Testbed will give you access to your Mac OS (and Microsoft Office) from your iPad.

In addition to downloading the Testbed app, you will also need to log into [easyazon-link asin=”B004O3YGMC” locale=”us”]Splashtop Streamer[/easyazon-link] (for your Mac OS) and retain your username and password. Whenever you want to use your iPad to work on papers and so on, you will need to log into Splashtop Streamer on your laptop. Once you log in, you will be required to provide a passcode or security code for your iPad. This is how you must connect your iOS to Mac OS in order for this solution to work.

Next, connect the iPad by using the security code and finding your laptop on the server. The connection will go through, and your Mac OS desktop should now appear on your iPad. I highly recommend that you also have a physical keyboard nearby, so that some gestures on your iPad are touch, while others are on a physical keyboard. Once you do, you can send emails, documents, and type research papers (and use accurate footnotes) by way of the Windows 8 Metro Testbed application.

I realize that this is not ideal for everyone, but if you want to get Microsoft Office on your iPad, this seems to be the most hassle-free way to do it. Forgive me in the video; my MacBook Pro keyboard is in need of serious repair and many of the keys I needed for my password and username were not available. Even if you do not own a username and password for Splashtop Streamer, you can still access the Windows 8 testbed application and use it for writing purposes with your Microsoft Office software on your Mac OS.

Microsoft is still being stingy with its software at the moment. If you want to have the Microsoft experience without purchasing a Microsoft tablet, look no further than your iPad and Mac OS laptop.

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3 Replies to “How to Get Microsoft Office on Your IPad”

  1. I downloaded OnLive Desktop on my iPad, created an OnLive account, uploaded files from my PC, and now I can work on existing files or create new Microsoft Office files on my iPad and access them on other devices. Granted, it’s Windows and Microsoft Office 2010, but that’s fine for me since I work in both Windows and Mac environments.

    OnLive works for me. The biggest drawback is that you can’t copy and paste between apps on the iPad and OnLive. However, with the paid version of OnLive for $4.99/month, I have access to Dropbox, so I can move some things from apps into Dropbox and then access them in OnLive via Dropbox. Not perfect, but it’s a way to work around that biggest drawback.

    Keyboard functionality is not perfect, but combining my iPad external keyboard with the onscreen keyboard in OnLive, everything works to an acceptable level when you just want to have Windows and Internet Explorer and Office 2010 at your fingertips.

  2. George,

    Thanks so much for commenting on this article. I see that you also added the Splashtop link and the YouTube video to this. Thanks so much.

    At the moment, I’m having a bit of trouble with my laptop. It seems that some of my keyboard keys are not working properly. I still have an iPad on which to blog and write, but, as you can imagine, it’s not the same as having a trackpad. Apple seems to not want to allow a trackpad on anything other than a MacBook Pro (the model of the computer that’s giving me trouble), so I’ll need to get it fixed at some point. I simply wanted to apply a URL, but thanks so much for applying the video. I am usually good at these things when my MacBook Pro is in full working speed, but it’s prevented me from some things. This does not mean that I cannot copy and paste photos, do screenshots, etc. I can still access material…but I’m having to do the majority of work from my iPad. For me, this solution allowed me the opportunity to still use Microsoft Office, even when my MacBook Pro is out of commission.

    I hope others enjoy this post as well. Thanks for the support; I always need it.

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