Microsoft launches Office for iPad, including Word, Excel and Powerpoint

By , Mar 27, 2014

Office for iPad (teaser 004)

The rumors were true! Microsoft’s new chief executive office Satya Nadella is hosting a press briefing in San Francisco this morning. After the CEO discussed Microsoft’s ‘mobile first, cloud first’ strategy, Julia White, Microsoft’s chief of Office Division Product Management, took the stage to formally reveal Office for iPad.

“This is definitely not the Windows app ported to the iPad,” said White, adding that Word, Excel and PowerPoint for iPad are all native iOS apps. Microsoft Word, Excel and Powerpoint apps are now available for download in the App Store, joining Microsoft’s existing OneNote for iPhone and iPad and the recently released OneNote for Mac.

Akin to Office 365 for iPhone which debuted last June, Office for iPad requires Microsoft’s Office 365 subscription for editing features. The entry-level subscription tier will set you back $9.99-per-month (or $99.99 per year) for a Home Premium package, which buys you access to the Office applications for Windows, Mac and mobile on up to five devices.

A more affordable Office 365 Personal has been announced recently ($6.99 per month, $69.99 per year, limited to just one PC or Mac, plus one tablet), but it’s not available just yet. You can sign up for a free 30-day Office 365 trial and for those who don’t want a subscription, Office for iPad will let you view and present Office documents, spreadsheets and presentations, but not edit the files…

“It’s a beautiful set of applications,” says Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella “That’s our real commitment to Office 365, everywhere.”

Microsoft Word, Excel and PowerPoint for iPad support standard Office files and integrates with Microsoft’s OneDrive cloud storage for syncing content across devices and platforms. Unfortunately, Dropbox, Google Drive and other popular cloud storage solutions are not supported.

Nadella said that a cool 3.5 million people are subscribed to consumer versions of Office 365.

Office for iPad (teaser 005)Office for iPad (teaser 006)

Microsoft’s blurb:

Starting Thursday, Office 365 subscribers can simply add an iPad as one of their chosen devices included in their subscription benefits, and can create and edit documents with Word for iPad, PowerPoint for iPad and Excel for iPad.

These apps are available as free downloads from the App Store, enabling people to read and present documents, spreadsheets and presentations. Office for iPad brings full file fidelity across Office on PC, Mac, tablet and phone, and along with cloud storage from OneDrive or OneDrive for Business your files are up to date, wherever you need them on whatever device you want to use.

With the free apps, you can read Word documents, use Excel data and present with PowerPoint. With an Office 365 subscription, you can edit and create new documents with the iPad. An Office 365 subscription not only gets you the complete Office apps for iPad, but also always-up-to-date versions of Office for PC and Mac.

Check out the promotional video.

“When you edit a document on the iPad, you can be sure that you won’t lose any content or formatting,” Microsoft ensures us. Also, Word for iPad tracks changes like its desktop counterpart does, supports threaded comments and lets you easily accept or reject edits, all right on the iPad.

“You can even use iPad features like voice dictation to draft a Word document or AirPlay to project a presentation wirelessly on a TV screen,” writes Microsoft.

Office for iPad (teaser 008)

Office for iPad (teaser 007)

Re/code has a nice hands-on video up, I’ve included it below for your viewing pleasure. By the way, publication says the official Office for iPad is the best iPad office suite they’ve tested to date.

Engadget has a few nice screenshots up.

Office for iPad (screenshot 007)
The main screen.

Office for iPad (screenshot 008)
Word for iPad

Office for iPad (screenshot 009)
Excel for iPad

Office for iPad (screenshot 010)
PowerPoint for iPad.

An excerpt from Engadget’s review:

It was easy to imagine Office for iPad would be little more than a blown-up version of the existing iPhone app. That it is most certainly not. Microsoft took its time developing this software (years, perhaps), and the result is a suite that makes excellent use of the iPad’s extra screen real estate.

The design here is beautiful, straightforward. What’s more, it masks a delightful selection of customization options, many of which you wouldn’t know were there at first glance.

And another batch of (blurry) Office for iPad screenshots.

Office for iPad (screenshot 002)

Office for iPad (screenshot 001)

Office for iPad (screenshot 003)

Office for iPad (screenshot 004)

Office for iPad (screenshot 005)

Office for iPad (screenshot 006)

The new CEO Satya Nadella made it clear his company will be taking Office 365 to various platforms. “Our commitment going forward is to make sure that we drive Office 365 everywhere,” he said. “So that means across the Web, across all phones, across all tablets, across PCs. That’s our real commitment to Office 365 everywhere.”

Office for iPad supports the following Office 365 subscription plans: Office 365 Home, Office 365 Small Business Premium, Office 365 Midsize Business, Office 365 E3 and E4 (Enterprise and Government), Office 365 Education A3 and A4, Office 365 ProPlus, Office 365 University and the new Office 365 Personal, when it becomes available later this Spring.

While I have no doubt in my mind that business people whose productivity depends on Microsoft’s Office suite will embrace Office for iPad, folks who only need to occasionally edit Office files will have a hard time justifying paying a monthly subscription, especially as Apple offers its iWork suite of productivity applications free of charge with new iOS device purchases.

The apps are now live in the App Store so go ahead and download Microsoft Word, Excel and PowerPoint apps to your iPad right now.

The apps are available in 135 markets, work on iPads only, require iOS 7.0 or later and support 29 languages.

The missing link: Outlook for iPad.

I know, Microsoft offers an Outlook Web App for the iPad to get your emails.

By the way, Office Mobile for iPhone is now free for home use.

To learn more, check out Microsoft’s press release and the Office blog post.

Are you glad that Microsoft finally gave Office a proper treatment on the iPad?

Note: this article was updated several times as new information became available.

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  • Yehya Mansour

    Annnnnd Microsoft dug its own grave :D A moment of silence for souls of our brothers and sisters (Microsoft Surfaces and Android Tablets)

    • Steve Jobs

      “If you don’t cannibalize yourself, someone else will.”

      • http://173.58.214.169/ Anthony3595

        Dear steve jobs please fix iOS 7!

      • http://www.apple.com St3vè Jb

        I will Cloning you‼️

  • Mohammed Sahib

    Yay! Let’s hope it will be priced reasonably and won’t require the stupid office 365 subscription.

    • Marcus Winchester

      It requires 365 which makes it much more lucrative for MSFT and crapper for us. I don’t see this as a big announcement, Office works best on a PC. Even though you can use a keyboard on an iPad, it will be a lesser version of Office.

  • hkgsulphate

    This will boost the sale of iPad?

    • hkgsulphate

      okay I think not now

  • Linton Findlay

    and this is different to the 365 app how? why are they trying to push 365 so much, i really like office 2013 but only because i dont have to pay a subscription for something that should be on pc’s anyway like iworks is on new macs now

    • Tom

      Just pirate it…

      • Linton Findlay

        pirate a subscription? easier said than done

      • ✪ aidan harris ✪

        Assuming he’s referring to iOS I’m guessing by ‘pirate’ he means install the “Insert-Cracked-IPSW-File-Here”…

      • Linton Findlay

        the apps are free though, and im guessing a 365 subscription hack will be impossible since its server based, cracking the apps wont do anything

      • ✪ aidan harris ✪

        There must surely be a way to run it offline though? Not even Microsoft could be that stupid surely? Assuming it can run offline there’s likely going to be a way to hack / crack. Note that I’m not condoning this though ;)

      • Tom

        Nope, I mean that you don’t have to waste hundreds of bucks for the crap called office 2014.

      • Jonathan

        Just shut up..

  • a3yu

    We already have a good suite of office applications..it’s called Pages,Numbers and Keynote…and they are free and powerful!

    • CAS

      Agree, but some people just prefer office :-/

      • a3yu

        routine..just it XD

    • jack

      I see you don’t know much about Office.. only the basic stuff students know.
      Excel is light years ahead of Numbers, same with Powerpoint. Word not too much.

      • a3yu

        Yeah for exel 100% agree :P

      • Cameron Chao

        is the benefits of Excel and Powerpoint worth $100 a year more?

      • migo

        are you sure you are not working in MacDonald’s ?

      • jack

        Of course not.. Subscriptions for offline products are scam

    • Damian

      Free ? Last time I checked they were 10 bucks each

      • a3yu

        New ios device(from 9-2013)= iworks + iLife free

      • Freppelepp

        Hence, they are not free. I’m not buying a new iShit device just to get a “free” copy of those shitty apps.

      • a3yu

        So you have a phone that you can define old ishit. Wow you know very well how to spend your money

      • Freppelepp

        I have an iPad 2 which I have had for several years. Unlike most iSheep I’m not upgrading my devices every year like Apple wants me to.

      • kiljoy616

        Who said most people upgrade every year? Apple has been growing its business with new people. That some may want the latest is no concern of yours since they have the money to do it. Yes I am one of those people, love the tax deduction and it put no dent on my finances to get a new phone or iPad every two years.

    • Freppelepp

      Not free.

  • Rowan09

    I really believe if they gave people an option to pay full price, people would actually do it.

    • ✪ aidan harris ✪

      I know I for one would even if I didn’t use them much but since they require subscription services I’m completely dissuaded by them…

      • Dan

        same here

  • Jason Baroni

    Now Satya Nadella can use his iPad in public.

  • CAS

    My father need this, unfortunaly he will think it’s expensive.

  • jack

    Pathetic… subscription to use a program that has been used offline for decades without problem? I don’t need to pay monthly to be able to upload my office files to the cloud. STUPID AND GREED stunt.

  • Ignacio Irigoyen

    Please, please, Microsoft, charge me for something that apple and google give me for free!!!

  • dpacemaker

    I can’t seem to find them in the app store. I’m in the U.S and its 2:30pm.

    • http://www.jamesgunaca.com James Gunaca

      I just used the links posted, couldn’t find them searching myself, either.

  • Dan

    So I need Office 365… I’ll keep using Pages/Numbers, free with my iPad air

  • http://k40s.net/ Lukas Fülling

    Office is crap. No matter on which system.

    • http://173.58.214.169/ Anthony3595

      The last good Office was from 2010. Anything later is just bad.

      • https://twitter.com/MrElectrifyer MrElectrifyer

        Besides for the fugly-flat look, why’s that? The subscription stuff ain’t mandatory…

  • pauleebe

    I can see where business will use this, as they’ll eat the cost of office. I for sure won’t pay $9.99 a month for it.

  • Jim Hart

    Yawn. The per month subscription won’t fly with the non-business crowd. There are too many alternatives now since Microsoft took so long to come out with Office for the iPad.

  • Long Pham

    I wonder will we ever have kms Microsoft toolkit for iPad

    • Amr Badr

      Yea, I wonder too

  • onebyone_

    Damn! I really hate the anual subscription for a software that will offer SAME year by year. I only paid anual subscription for an antivirus NOT THIS!!!

  • n0ahcruz3

    Subscription based? No thanks

  • on3simpleclick

    Microsoft has went the way of Adobe. Subscription based to make more $$$.

    • https://twitter.com/MrElectrifyer MrElectrifyer

      And to avoid digging the grave of their consumer PC business…

  • august ebbesen

    Yay, one note for iPad is updated too!!!

    • Jonathan

      Speaking of which, free for limited time in Mac App Store.

      • August Ebbesen

        I thought it was OneNote for Mac?

      • Jonathan

        Do you mean instead of one note, os the full name “OneNote for Mac”? I just searched “OneNote” last night and it came up

  • CollegiateLad

    This is awesome. I love subscriptions.

  • https://twitter.com/MrElectrifyer MrElectrifyer

    Smart marketing tactic Microsoft!

  • Der Faust

    really?…. you have to PAY for a subscription to use it to edit?….. really???

    really?…. this announcement has less worth than the garbage truck pulling through the alley behind my house….

    MS must want Office 365 to mean how many days a year you don’t want to use it….

    really????

    and microsoft just does not see it……just too dang bad :(

  • Damian

    Since I subscribed to 365 as a student and I paid almost nothing for it, I am in haven now until my subscription ends in 4 years.

    Good life for students begins.