Microsoft share price: Software giant to unveil Office for iPad next week?
iNVEZZ.com, Tuesday, March 18: Microsoft Corp (NASDAQ:MSFT), the world’s largest software company, could be set to announce an iPad version of its Office software suite on March 27, according to media reports.
Citing an unnamed source familiar with the matter, Reuters reported yesterday that Microsoft’s recently-appointed CEO Satya Nadella is expected to use his first major media appearance to reveal that the company’s most profitable product will be coming to the popular tablet of its long-time rival, Apple Inc (NASDAQ:APPL).
Tech websites ZDNet and The Verge also reported the news, citing unnamed sources.
In yesterday’s trading, Microsoft shares closed nearly one percent higher at $38.05.
**Office for iPad**
Market observers have long urged Microsoft to adapt its famous productivity suite Office to Apple’s mobile devices as a counter to the decline in PC sales. Last year, the Redmond-based software behemoth finally released Office for the iPhone, but there was no version for Apple’s tablet.
ZDNet’s Microsoft watcher Mary Jo Foley wrote yesterday that, according to several of her sources, the company will introduce a Microsoft Office for iPad suite before the end of this month. That timeframe happens to coincide with a Microsoft media event scheduled for March 27, which is to be “focused on the intersection of cloud and mobile computing”, according to a Microsoft statement.
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Office for iPad is expected to work in a similar way to the iPhone version, meaning that it will likely require a subscription to Microsoft’s web-based Office 365 suite. The recently-announced Microsoft Office 365 Personal subscription — which allows users to install Office on one PC or Mac, plus one tablet — is expected to add iPads as one of the supported tablet types, ZDNet’s Foley reports.
It’s thought that Office for iPad would comprise Word, Excel, PowerPoint and OneNote but, possibly, no other Office client applications.
In addition to Office for iPad, Microsoft is also working on a touch-first version of Office called Gemini. The company had intimated that the product, which includes versions of Word, Excel, PowerPoint and OneNote adapted for Windows tablets, would be introduced before an iPad version. If the ZDNet sources are right though, those plans have changed and Office for iPad may make its entrance ahead of Gemini.
The tilt at iPad follows a signal from Microsoft that it intends to adopt a more liberal attitude towards putting its software on different platforms. Earlier yesterday, the company announced that it would make OneNote, its note-taking software, available for Mac computers. This was widely perceived by analysts as a move against Evernote, a popular rival app that offers both Mac and Android compatibility.
**As of yesterday’s US close buy Microsoft shares at $38.05**
**As of yesterday’s US close sell Microsoft shares at $38.05**