A few days ago, it was reported how Microsoft has partnered with Samsung to bring certain Microsoft applications to some new Samsung devices. Well, it seems that the folks over at Redmond are not done with what has been a host of announcements for the Android platform as of late. Today in a blog (source link below) Microsoft announced that it will be opening up core features for the viewing and editing of documents in Microsoft Office for free to any device that has a screen size smaller than 10.1 inches. This is already available for smartphones for Android and iOS, and seems to show Microsofts willingness to open itself to markets that it has seen very little penetration.
Microsoft Office has been a huge money maker for Microsoft over the years. It is the company's bread and butter along with its Windows operating system. Microsoft's willingness to operate with companies such as Samsung to provide core functionality and security for its applications shows that Microsoft is becoming more active and aggressive in the mobile space, even going so far as to work and integrate products with longtime rivals.
Microsoft has made clear its vision on how Microsoft will offer its products moving forward. According to Kirk Koenigsbauer, Corporate Vice President, Office 365 Client Applications and author of the blog had this to say about Microsoft's vision "…we plan to keep up with that one constantâ€"change. Now that Office is available for Windows, Android and iOS, we are investing in strategic partnerships with device makers. Availability across platforms has become an expectation for the one-in-seven people that use Office every dayâ€"and we deliver that by ensuring Office is immediately available on any device."
This is a huge turnaround from how Microsoft has acted in the past when it came to working and operating on other platforms outside of the Windows OS. With the upcoming release of its new operating system and mobile platform, it would seem Microsoft is trying to make some of its core products work across multiple platforms in an effort to appeal to as many people as possible and potentially bring in some additional revenue by attempting to compel users to purchase premium subscriptions that will yield more services. With more and more enterprise and professional users craving better and more useful productivity software, Microsoft seems to be willing to step up to the plate and make things happen regardless of the device you are on. It is certainly a change of pace; how long this philosophy will continue, or how well it will work remains to be seen.