Microsoft Office comes to the iPad

Office for iPadAfter holding out for several years, Microsoft has realized that holding out in supporting the iPad may be costing them more than money. In the years since the release of the iPad, users have found a way around the lack of Office support on the popular mobile device with Quickoffice, Apple’s iWork solutions (Pages, Numbers, and Keynote) and even Google’s Google Docs. The only problem is the users are finding they may not really need Microsoft Office.

Last week, Microsoft officially released Microsoft Office for iPad® – specifically Word, PowerPoint and Excel. Here is more from the Microsoft Blog:

But this isn’t simply Office on another device. We thought a lot about what people want to do when they’re on their tablet, iPad functionality, and touch-first when we were building Office for iPad. We reimagined Office on the iPad, while retaining what people love about Office. We hope you’ll be as pleased with the results as we are. In the future, we will bring Office apps to the Windows Store and other popular platforms. In addition to Office for iPad, we’ve gone a step further in our mobile first and cloud first approach, and like Windows Phone, we’ve now made Office Mobile for iPhone and Android phones available for free.

While free is great, unfortunately you can only read/view your Word & Excel docs. With PowerPoint, the free version is more like the old Powerpoint viewer application. To actually edit and work with your Office docs, you will need an Office 365 subscription, now offered as an In-App Purchase.

But once you purchase that upgrade…

Office documents look better than ever on iPad. They look just as they do on your PC or Mac. In Word, images, tables, SmartArt, footnotes, equations are all there, perfectly formatted. Formulas, charts, sparklines, conditional formatting, and filters in Excel help you make better decisions. PowerPoint presentations pack a punch with transitions, animations, speaker notes and much more. When presenting, you can even use a built-in laser pointer, pens and highlighters to get your point across.

To find out more, visit

About Ian Aberle

Ian Aberle is an Adobe Creative Educator and the Senior IT Communications Specialist & Trainer for the Office of Information Technology (OIT). For over 25 years, he has helped the SMU community use technology and implement digital and web media through multiple roles with the Digital Commons, SMU STAR Program, and now OIT. Ian enjoys photography and road trips with his family in his free time.
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