While Microsoft’s products have been challenged in the shadows of a multitude of other companies’ offerings, there is one program that has withstood the test of time. Microsoft Office is more of a necessity for the serious worker; it serves as the ultimate assistant to ensure a project, report, or any other document is completed the way that it is needed.
Google has made a similar service available with their Drive program – a cloud-based service where users can perform work on platforms that are pretty similar to that of Word, Excel and PowerPoint. The increase in the usage of mobile devices has made it necessary for Google Drive to expand out into these mobile platforms, and this remains a popular free choice for workers.
There has never been a mobile platform for Microsoft Office, though discussions surrounding it has been been on for quite sometime throughout the year. The speculations are over, and thanks to a leaked report that came out of the Czech Republic, it has been reported throughout many sources that an Office 2013 iOS and Android app will be made available in early 2013.
The news of this sounds very enticing. For those who get their hands on it, having the ability to create and edit documents on a mobile basis is going to spell a whole new game in everyday meetings and project development. However, Microsoft and the developers behind the apps need to see a little bit of return on investment.
It may not bother most people, but in order to be able to view documents with the apps, users will have to have a Microsoft account. This isn’t really much of a process, but here is where people’s minds might start changing. Viewing an app is one thing, but being able to edit it is an entirely different side of the coin. In order to edit Office documents, you will have to subscribe to Microsoft 365.
Having Microsoft 365 means paying a monthly subscription fee. Depending on the size of the operation that you’re part of, the price ranges. On an individual basis, there is a four dollar-a-month fee. Going up to small businesses, it’s six dollars. At the midsize and enterprise level, there is an eight and twenty dollar option. Surely, if the business you’re part of is serious about granting mobile access to its employees, it shouldn’t really serve as much of an expense.
It might take some off guard, since Microsoft Office is just one of those products that was always available as a loyal Microsoft user. Office always coasted something, but to pay on a monthly basis for the service is new.
I would expect that there would be no limits into what can be done with the Android and iOS platforms, especially if you’re paying to edit documents.
Still, this is a big step for Microsoft, and should definitely do a lot to expand their user base and platform. Look out for more information about the apps as 2013 begins.