Microsoft is reportedly working on an Office beta program for Android tablets, after meeting with relative success in their iOS foray. While there are still no clear details on how this will be different from the existing mobile version, it is expected that it will work just like its iOS version, with Word, Excel and Powerpoint sure to be part of this working suite.
Their new CEO, Satya Nadella, has promised that Microsoft will become much more than just a hardware company, but a software provider that will support different platforms, not just its native one. This move to create a program for Android as well as the aforementioned venture into iOS territory is a step towards fulfilling that commitment.
Just like the iOS version, the Beta program for Android will be focusing on tablets, as most document processing occurs in that arena, more than the mobile phone versions. Those who want to check out this very early version can test it out as early as now in a private beta. This early version already features the new touch-friendly UI that Microsoft has been working on, to fit the phablet and tablet devices that they are targeting. They are also working on a Windows version of the Office suite that is more touch-friendly and it is expected to be released by 2015.
Microsoft building on their iOS and Android suites comes at a time when Google is trying to turn Android users away from the traditional Microsoft Office use by integrating Office functionalities into its own apps Docs, Sheets and Slides. Just this week, they updated Docs and Sheets to allow users to create and edit Word and Excel documents within the apps, without needing to convert them before and after. They also announced last week that they are removing Quickoffice from the Play Store since there’s no need for a separate app suite since you can do everything within the Google Office Suite apps.