Well, isn’t this interesting? Pundits peg Office RT as the crown jewel that will make Windows 8 shine in the eye of business users, but a Microsoft product manager and PR team said today that native Android and iOS versions of Office 2013 will be in consumer hands in as early as March.
Microsoft product manager Petr Bobek said as much to Czech site IHNED during a press conference today, while a separate press release by Microsoft Czech Republic PR crew confirmed that Office 2013 will be headed for iOS, Android, Windows Phone and Symbian devices, along with the usual Mac OS X and Windows 8 desktop clients.
The sharing didn’t stop there, either: it also included launch dates for the productivity packages, which were previously shrouded in mystery. The desktop version of Office 2013 will ship to enterprise clients in December, while The Verge reports that everyday folks will have to wait until February. The new Office 365 services are slated to launch alongside the mobile apps in March, according to the release.
If a native iPad Office app hits the proverbial streets, OnLive Desktop‘s 15 minutes of fame may just come to an end — especially if Microsoft improves the occasionally wonky Office 2013 touch controls. However, the Czech team could have been overstepping its bounds and piping up with untrue information: a Microsoft rep told Engadget that “The information shared by our Czech Republic subsidiary is not accurate.”
But even if the release date info isn’t exact, rumors about native iOS and Android Office apps have been swirling for months. We wouldn’t be surprised to see Microsoft’s productivity powerhouse land on competing mobile platforms sometime soon, even if only as part of an Office 365 subscription. “The information isn’t accurate” isn’t a cut-and-dry “No.”
Image credit: Microsoft