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Microsoft Office finally hits iOS, but why has it taken so long?

It’s been an epically long time coming, considering that this is the fast-paced world of technology but, finally, Microsoft’s Office suite has made its way onto iOS. So what’s been the hold up?

Office comes to iPad

The problems between Apple and Microsoft were never going to be resolved with ease. Both colossal companies, each obsessed with seeing its own individual operating system succeed over all others, even though Apple pretty much invented the tablet market four years ago when it unveiled the first iPad, an iOS app version of Microsoft’s document editing software has simply wallowed in the Windows wilderness due to recoding issues and, of course, Microsoft’s own touch-tablet endeavours.

As confirmed by ex-Microsoft CEO, Steve Balmer, the company had been working on an iPad equivalent of Office for some time, but had been holding back to launch Windows RT and Surface RT versions for its own touch and tablet-types first. However, Microsoft’s munchkins had to rewrite the whole Office (and indeed Windows) affair from the ground up in order to make it play nice with ARM-based processors, which meant that any apps for older variants of Windows, such as Adobe Acrobat, wouldn’t work with new OS… or, indeed, any other apps not touch-led.

Consequently, attempting to still entice consumers, Microsoft offered its new Office as a freebie with RT to make up for the lack of any other available touch-optimised apps at launch. But it wasn’t enough to convince said people to part with their hard-earned and, as such, Windows RT proved to be a flop; along with Microsoft’s whole tablet strategy, which had, in the process prolonged the release of the iPad version even further.

As a result, ending the kerfuffle, Microsoft has now done the decent thing and the – rumoured to be long ready – Office for iPad has finally landed, making Word, Excel and PowerPoint free for iOS7 users. So if you happen to be reading this on your Apple tab, head over to iTunes now and arm yourself with Office.

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