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Office for iPad reportedly leaked, near ready

updated 08:55 am EST, Tue February 21, 2012

Office for iPad gets early details

Microsoft's long-rumored Office for iPad got a much more tangible piece of evidence after a leak Tuesday purported to show the suite itself. As shown by The Daily, Office would be an all-encompassing single app with Excel, PowerPoint, and Word. The interface would recall OneNote but bring in more of the Metro interface language from Windows Phone and Windows 8.

It's not apparent if other apps would fill out Office, although Microsoft doesn't have as much of a need given the built-in e-mail app's Exchange sync support.

The project is effectively considered done and is believed on the edge of being sent to Apple for approval. If so, it could be ready within "weeks," the tablet publication said. As could be expected, Microsoft had no plans for an Android version.

If posted online as expected, Office for iPad would be a reluctant admission for Microsoft that it had to support Apple's tablet platform to get a significant audience for a touchscreen Office suite. A desktop-level version of Office 15 will be a cornerstone of Windows 8 and a claimed advantage for its future tablets, but Microsoft has shed nearly all of its market share in touch devices and will force it to start from near scratch. Office could also end up cementing the iPad's place in the workforce by proving more defintively that it can be used for content creation, possibly replacing traditional notebooks.

by MacNN Staff



  1. prl99

    Joined: Dec 1969



    I know way too many people feel Word is a requirement for all enterprise users but if I see Microsoft deviate from Apple's iOS GUI standards, replacing them with the stupid Windows 8 garbage, I'll be upset. If all Microsoft is doing is porting their mess over to iOS, it will cause all sorts of usability problems for the iPad. The iPad doesn't need the antiquated Office suite, people just need to accept the fact that there is more than one way to manage documents.

  1. BigMac2

    Joined: Dec 1969



    Until then, there is Cloudon on iPad:

  1. iphonerulez

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Nice to know that iHaters might

    be forced to eat their words if Microsoft declares that content can actually be created on the iPad since all the fools say content can't be created on the iPad.

  1. mkral

    Joined: Dec 1969


    can't wait

    I will buy this the first day it's available. Paes & Keynote are great apps on the ipad, but Numbers is very limited compared to excel. It will be nice to be able to work on spreadsheets without messing them up during conversion to/from numbers.

  1. nostrademas

    Joined: Dec 1969



    It would be great if they could bring a 100% MS Office file compatible app to the iPad. I don't want the bloated interface, in fact even if the functionality was limited, as long as the file comes in and displays exactly the way it should and when it goes back out it is completely intact, then that would be a win. Obviously I'd want the best features to be there, and optimised for touch.

    Experience of using Word docs in Pages, PPT in Keynote, and Numbers in Excel, and vice versa, is a very poor one. And while it pains me to say it, Pages may be quite good for some things, but its implementation of style sheets really sucks (the best feature of any word processor, though I'd bet 90% of people don't use them properly or at all). In a touch environment, style sheets are killer because you can do consistent and even complex formatting with one tap.

  1. dwoodruff

    Joined: Dec 1969



    Did they use Microsoft Word Spellcheck on the headline?

  1. Jeronimo2000

    Joined: Dec 1969



    "It would be great if they could bring a 100% MS Office file compatible app to the iPad."

    Don't hold your breath. MS Office isn't even 100% compatible with MS Office.

  1. Inkling

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Hard to imagine

    Given the popularity of iPads, Microsoft has no choice. A killer app is an app so popular that people buy computer hardware just to run it. Lotus 123 is said to have done that for PCs. The flip also may be true. There could be a digital device so popular (the iPads 60% market share), that an app maker that doesn't create a version for it is in trouble. No iPad version of Office could allow someone, perhaps even Apple, to grab a big slice of the Office suite market away even on laptops and desktops.

    I know that's how I've begun to think. When I hear of a new iOS app, my first question is "Does it have a OS X version?" and vice-versa. Increasingly, you have to have a mobile version to validate the laptop/desktop version and vice-versa. And they need to synch almost effortlessly.

    That said, it's hard to imagine how Microsoft could squeeze Word alone into a tolerable iPad interface, much less the entire Office suite in one app.

  1. Flying Meat

    Joined: Dec 1969


    separate apps?

    Do you want all of that junk taking up space on the device when you might only want one or two of the apps? I don't. I dislike the idea you would have to have the entire bloated suite installed.

  1. jwdsail

    Joined: Dec 1969


    interesting if true

    Interesting if true.

    I prob. won't buy it, but am glad to hear it may be in the works.

    The availability of Office for iOS, if documents can easily be shared between iOS, Mac, and Windows versions, could be the tipping point for many potential iOS device purchasers. (even if those iOS device purchasers only use the iOS MS Office once)

    What we really need is support for a wider selection of fonts on iOS. Many corporate documents require some specific fonts the iPad doesn't have. It can be a PITA.. If iOS 5.1 or iOS 6 offers support for adding your own OpenType fonts that all installed iOS apps can use, it'd be a much bigger thing for some businesses than MS Office for iOS...

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