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Microsoft’s Free Word App Tops The App Store Charts


Microsoft’s free Word app that was released for iOS devices has reached the top of the Apple app store with 2nd position after Facebook app. The app was launched a year back for iOS and Android devices as a part of the company’s increasing focus into smartphones and tablets.81114-105

Earlier, Office 365 was available only on Windows phones and this provided only less accessibility to users of other platforms. Other Office services like PowerPoint and Excel are also rising in popularity. Recently, the company also announced that Office 365 for mobile devices will include premium features like editing and creating documents which was earlier not included in the free version. Earlier, Office 365 users had to spend $99/year for editing and creating files while the free version offered read-only only access.

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However, users will need a subscription to unlock all the premium features like different layouts and other tools. Users will be able to edit Word documents directly from the Dropbox app as Microsoft has partnered with the company.

Microsoft has promised a similar experience of the Office on iPhone as in iPad versions. The company has released a major update for Office suite in iPad and has announced that a touch based version will be released in Microsoft 10. The company will not be offering the free service to businesses as it is the main source of revenue through OneDrive and Dropbox  for business. Excel has reached the seventh potion in the Apple app store charts.

The new move comes after Satya Nadella took over as CEO and wanted to expand the base of Office services to other platforms. As Android and iOS users form 93 percent of mobile devices and Windows contributes 2.5 percent worldwide, the freemium model would bring in more Office subscribers for the company. The beta testing of Office for Android with tablet optimizations is in progress and will be available by 2015. The upcoming version will provide similar features offered in iOS.

Although Microsoft made its office for mobile free, users will have to pay for the desktop version of Office suite that includes PowerPoint, Word, Excel and One Note that is priced at $140 for the home and student versions. Other pricing plans include $7 to $10 per month and $99 annual subscription that varies depending on the  number of computers where the suite gets installed.

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A movie buff, a bookworm, and a compulsive doodler. All posts by Anirudh

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