Microsoft Office is a staple of the technology world. If you own a computer chances are you have used Office. That said, in recent times the landscape has changes somewhat. Not all of us use desktops as much as we used to. Now with the tech world merging what a phone/tablet and desktop mean, how we work is also constantly changing. More worryingly for Microsoft, with the introduction of other (and free) online programs like Google Docs and app based Office equivalents like Kingston, Polaris and OfficeSuite we seem to be using Office less and less. That said, a number of us still do use Office. It now looks that in an attempt to make sure those that do continue to use Office, Microsoft are revolutionising how Office is delivered.
There was a time when Office cost money and not little money. It was an expensive add-on when you purchased a new computer. That changed sometime ago when Microsoft launched a browser version of Office which allowed basic free creating and editing of docs online. It seems Microsoft is finally understanding ‘free is good’ and have made some recent changes which suggest Office is becoming more of a free…or maybe freemium product. It was only a couple of days ago that it was announced Microsoft were going into partnership with Dropbox and offering full integration of the two service’s apps. For instance, you could edit and create documents in your Dropbox folder and likewise open Dropbox files directly from within the Office apps.
As an extension of this Microsoft have today announced a new development to their Android apps in general. Early on in 2014 Microsoft dropped the subscription based charge for Android mobile apps which allowed basic editing and creating of docs within the app. Well it seems this may have worked for Office as they are now beta testing a new app for android tablets. Which when considering the nature of Office will be useful for its users. The new tablet optimised app is not due to properly roll-out as a public release until 2015, but you can request to be part of the beta testing now and try the app out. If that interests you then click here and fill out the short form. This was also combined with the announcement that Office is now available on all android devices free of charge and without subscription. Of course, this will only be the basic version of Office and the more advanced business aspects will only be available via the optional subscription. However, if you only create and edit documents then it will be free for you across all your devices.