Microsoft Office on the iPad raises questions

MGM

The Rashomon of Microsoft Office

Yes, no, and maybe. The door is ajar. Similar to a Zen koan, bloggers are struggling to find meaning in recent statements made by Microsoft's (NASDAQ:MSFT) marketing master Tami Reller. Asked if the software giant is still contemplating the meaning of Office on the iPad and Android, the cryptic response was as clearly heard as the sound of one hand clapping.

Like the grasshoppers at their feet, bloggers did manage to plainly hear that Microsoft has passed the benchmark of 200 million Windows 8 licenses sold, but the meaningful question remains. A question answered yet unanswered. Water is freezing.

In IT Blogwatch, bloggers listen for trees falling in a forest.

Filling in for our humble blogwatcher Richi Jennings, is a humbler Stephen Glasskeys.

 

Moving forward, Jonny Evans carves out his future:

Microsoft may have chosen a new CEO but [it] still hasn't figured out how to carve a future in the Apple-driven...world. And it all comes down to Office.

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Windows isn't selling. For most computer users an iPad, iPhone or one of their...challengers do everything they need to do on a PC: email, music, a few apps, games, [etc].

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[People] still want Office, but analysts say Microsoft blocked introduction of Office on non-Windows mobile platforms [attempting] to boost sales of its own mobile devices.

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There are alternatives. These alternatives may not match Office right now, but so what? History...moves forward, and while Microsoft's competitors continue to improve their Office alternatives, what's Microsoft up to?  MORE

 

And Juan Carlos Perez thinks differentially:

[Thursday at] the Goldman Sachs Technology & Internet Conference, Marketing Executive Vice President Tami Reller was asked about Microsoft's willingness to "repurpose" Office for other platforms, even if this means hurting Windows' appeal.

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"With Windows, we're obviously spending a lot of time thinking about how do we continue to differentiate the full Windows experience," she said.

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Reller's answer begs the question whether Microsoft is having second thoughts about [porting office to] rival tablet devices and is back to hand-wringing mode over the dilemma of protecting Windows at the expense of liberating Office.

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Many critics fault Microsoft for having taken so long to deliver a full version of Office for iPads, in particular.   MORE

 

We consult Mary Jo Foley, but she speaks in code:

Office for iPad -- which I've recently heard is codenamed "Miramar" -- isn't dead. In fact, it's likely to make it to market ahead of Microsoft's touch-first version of Office (codenamed "Gemini") according to a couple of my sources.

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I hear Ballmer [and others] may have had a change of heart towards the end of last year. According to one of my contacts, Ballmer OK'd the suggestion by the Office team [to] bring Office for iPad to market as soon as it was ready, even though that would likely mean before the Windows 8 version. I'm hearing that new date for Office for iPad is some time in the first half of calendar 2014.   MORE

 

Long waits are core to Chris Smith's history:

Tami Reller [said] this week: "As we step back and say, these core applications, these core brands that are so important to enterprise customers and consumers, how do we make sure that we're thoughtful about what we're doing on the Windows platform, as well as cognizant of the fact that there's other devices in their lives."

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So, while that was interpreted by some as Microsoft backing off..it may be that [it's] taking stock before ending the longest wait for software to reach [other platforms] in recent tech history.  MORE

 

Thoughtfully, Gregg Keizer watches his words:

Thoughtful. T-h-o-u-g-h-t-f-u-l. Thoughtful.

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That was the watchword...for Tami Reller...when she was asked what plans the company has to extend [Office]...to mobile platforms other than Windows.

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During her answers to other questions...Reller stuck to the lines drawn earlier by her former boss Ballmer, and her new one, Nadella.   MORE

 

Meanwhile, Mike Beasley works for free:

[With] iWork now shipping for free on all new Macs and iOS devices...is Microsoft preparing to offer too little too late?  MORE

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