Opinion: Incredibly Weird Pricing On The Microsoft Office App For iOS

So, a rumor floated around earlier today suggesting that Microsoft would be releasing MS Office for iOS devices early in 2013. The Office app (or apps) would apparently be free of charge and would enable the user to view Microsoft Office documents. Anyone wishing to edit an MS Office document would be required to place an in-app purchase for a membership to Office 365, which is currently priced at around $6 per month per user.

Let’s put aside the fact that this part of the rumor could be wildly inaccurate and assume for one minute that it is correct. If Microsoft doesn’t make a significant change to their pricing policy, and the ability to edit documents would require a $6 per month fee, how would that affect iOS users. Well, if you have Pages installed on your iPhone or iPad (for a one off fee of $9.99), you can view and edit Word documents to a fairly sizeable extent already. Same with Numbers. Same with Keynote.

According to the report, the new app will allow only minimal editing of Office files on iOS devices. Seems to me that’s what we’ve already got, without the six bucks a month.


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  • Bob Warren

    I suppose they’re trying to maintain the one and only advantage which their Surface really has (the ability to run ‘real Office’ properly). But that means we have to ask: why are they bothering at all? The only good reason I can think of is that they don’t want consumers to buy this at all, but they want to be able to tell corporate IT departments that there is a way to enable ‘real Office’ on their employees’ iPads (as a stopgap measure until they all buy Windows tablets). Hopefully they will fail, because I’m tired of listening to arrogant little Microsoft fanboys going on and on about how you can’t be ‘productive’ without Windows and Office, how Macs and iPads are just toys for children, and so on. Microsoft fanboys are really trying hard to make Apple fanboys seem less ridiculous.

  • Johannes

    Classic doa. :)

  • PeterBlood

    Typical Microsoft brilliance and ability to think these things out as something desirable.