Ad Code

Microsoft Office comes to Android

Microsoft recently made a version of Office Mobile available free for iPhone owners who also subscribe to its cloud-based Office 365 service. Now it's Android's turn.

On Wednesday, Microsoft extended a similar benefit to folks with Office 365 subscriptions and Android smartphones. The offering comes at no additional cost to those subscribers, but a typical Office 365 subscription runs $99.99 a year (and lets people use Office on up to 5 PCs and/or Macs).

As with the version for the iPhone, the mobile app is meant to complement Office on a personal computer so it's more Office light than anything else. (The Android version was not available to test in advance.) So, Android owners can access, view and edit Microsoft Word, Excel and PowerPoint documents on their smartphones or create Word and Excel docs (but not PowerPoint docs) from scratch on those handsets. Outlook is not part of the deal.

The Android version can be downloaded from the Google Play Store, but the app itself is only available for Android phones, not tablets. If you have a tablet, Microsoft recommends you use Office Web Apps instead. Office 365 subscribers can employ Office Mobile for Android on up to 5 phones.

Folks who use the mobile app can access documents on Microsoft's cloud-based SkyDrive or SkyDrive Pro.

It has obviously taken awhile for Office to come to Android, just as it took time to hit the iPhone, and even at that there are limits and restrictions (e.g., the Office 365 requirement). Microsoft customers with Windows Phones got first dibs at Office Mobile. In the interim, people with rival devices turned to third party apps such as QuickOffice or relied on the likes of online services such as Google Docs to help fill in the void.

Post a Comment