Microsoft may launch an iPad version of their popular Office productivity suite.
This was conveyed by Mike Tedesco, Senior Product manager at Microsoft to folks from T3 website during their private presentation of the new Office for Mac 2011.
In his statement, Mike said:
"Yeah, it's something that we're looking at. Obviously the announcement (of the iPad) is really fresh and there's nothing to announce or nothing that I can talk to you about today. We've had tablet technology forever and both Windows 7 and Windows Vista automatically detect that and you can be running your Office on there."
Mike's statements clearly imply that there is nothing on the cards for the immediate future. However, the acknowledgement of the iPad as a platform that Microsoft is looking at into the long term could be reassuring to Cupertino whose target group also includes business users.
Having said that, Apple's position on an iPad version of Office is still unclear. It may be recalled that the company launched an iPad-compatible version of their iWork productivity suite when the tablet device was unveiled last month. Apple has indicated that iPad users may download separate apps for Pages, Numbers and Keynote for $9.99 each from the App Store. With Microsoft Office being a dominant player in this segment, Apple might see Redmond as a potential threat to sale of iWork.
However, it is also to be seen if the iPad would retain its utility value in the absence of valuable software like Microsoft Office. What are your thoughts on this? Do you see an iPad without Office retaining its value for business users? Tell us what you think in the comments.