A little over two months ago, Microsoft introduced its version of Office for the iPad. While that was fantastic to see arrive, if not quite a bit overdue, it also managed to help punctuate just where Microsoft’s mobile aspirations for Office were still lacking; for instance, we had Office Mobile for Android smartphones, and Microsoft even made it free for home use, but there was still no Android tablet version. A new report not only affirms that such an Android tablet release is still in the works, but suggests that it might even beat a native Windows 8 Metro version to market.
Supposedly, touch-centric Metro-fied versions of the core Office apps won’t be ready for Windows 8 until spring 2015. By contrast, the Android versions could be released before the end of 2014.
The rumors suggest that Microsoft is swallowing its pride and making its priority going after the most users possible, rather than propping-up its own platform. For mobile, right now that means focusing on iOS and Android, and with iOS taken care of, Android becomes the next priority.
Besides just that aspect, there’s also a bit of logic to delaying a Windows release, as waiting until spring would put it in line with not just an expected new desktop version of Office, but also the possible release of Windows 9 itself.