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Remember this ad? The advertisement where Microsoft attempts to position the iPad as a chopstick-playing toy and the Surface as a PowerPoint-editing device?

Yeah, that’s why we cannot have good things.

Microsoft simply released Office the the iPhone. It lets users edit any Word, Excel or PowerPoint paper. As the oh-so-catchy name states, Office Mobile for Workplace 365 customers is Office Mobile for Office 365 subscribers only, implying the app is essentially $100 a year. It’s not ‘Office for iOS.’ It’s just a way to open and partially modify Workplace files for those saps spending for Microsoft’s costly cloud platform.

Judging from the screenshots, it appears like a quality application. It supports rich media content like graphes, animations, SmartArt graphics and shapes. And because it resolves MS’ cloud service, all changes minimized the phone updates the initial, too.

But ignore a native iPad app. Microsoft can’t get rid of the only genuine selling point of its struggling Surface tablet.

Microsoft may have moved enough Surface tablets to not call it a flop, however the tablet was far from a blockbuster hit. Since launch, Microsoft has actually supported it with continuous ad campaigns touting the tablet us productivity chops. The current TV spot pits the Surface RT against the iPad, considering its providing as the superior choice for those that have to get any work done. However, in Microsoft’s world ‘work’ equates to editing a PowerPoint deck. This is something you can do rather easily on the iPad utilizing Keynote and, in reality, I suspect Keynote individuals are aware of the perks of their exceptional platform.

Middle manager infighting should be rampant at Microsoft. One on hand, the business needs to properly support its Windows 8 environment and that indicates position its tablet providing as the only MS Workplace option. However then, likewise, a true mobile version of MS Office would much better help fight Google Docs. In this case the Office team lost, relegating Office to just the iPhone and in a truncated variation at that. Windows 8 wins, the Surface stays somewhat more interesting, and everyone in Redmond wins.

Only the consumer loses.