Office Will Have an Important Role in the Future of iOS, Android

By J. Gerry Purdy  |  Posted 2011-12-20 Print this article Print


There is one gigantic advantage for running Office on iOS or Android: When you unplug the tablet from the docking station, you are left with a traditional, sleek iPad or Android tablet. While you might not have as much control managing and editing documents, the Office applications would still be there to assist with updating a basic document.

Running Outlook on an iOS or Android tablet would provide another major change from the way email is managed on these devices. Currently, built-in default mail applications on iOS and Android cannot sync files easily with the Sent folder. However, with Outlook and Exchange, all files and folders would be kept in sync. 

If you send an email from the iOS Mail, it will stay in the iOS Mail Sent folder. The next time you go to Outlook on your laptop, those Sent messages would not be present. Under Microsoft Office running on an ARM tablet, all your Sent items would be available across all the devices that use Outlook as the email client. In turn, your emails would be available for you to access and review.

Within the next few years, more tablets are going to be sold than laptops. And, when that happens, Microsoft will be in a good position to offer Office for iOS and Android devices. Besides, most people under the age of 40 are spending more time using either Android or Apple iOS. This means that a whole generation of workers is getting accustomed to that type of user interface, while using Microsoft Windows less and less.

If the current state of development at Microsoft holds up, the company could begin demonstrating Office on ARM by the middle or end of 2012, with the product reaching the market by 2013. While Windows Phone has only generated small market share numbers in North America for Microsoft, Office on ARM would surely generate large market share and may prove to generate more revenue for Microsoft than Windows in this new market.

Naturally, this begs the question: If Microsoft ports Windows and then Office to ARM, and users migrate to using an ARM-based portable, it may-over many years-result in the death of the traditional x86-based laptops. This strategy may result in Intel, which makes the lion's share of the world's x86 chips, creating its own line of ARM architecture or acquiring a company that already does.

No matter how you look at it, Office is going to play a very important role in the future of iOS and Android.


J. Gerry Purdy, Ph.D., is Principal Analyst of Mobile & Wireless at MobileTrax LLC.
Dr. Purdy has been covering mobile, wireless, cloud & enterprise for the past 20+ years. He writes analysis and recommendations each week in an easy-to-read manner that helps people better understand important technology issues and assist them in making better technology purchasing decisions.

Disclosure Statement: From time to time, I may have a direct or indirect equity position in a company that is mentioned in a column. If that situation happens, then IÔÇÖll disclose it at that time.

Submit a Comment

Loading Comments...
Manage your Newsletters: Login   Register My Newsletters

Rocket Fuel