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Why Microsoft decided to make office apps free for Android and iOS 

Microsoft's move to make its Office apps for Android and iOS free for consumers is not surprising at all. The software heavy weight is simply reacting to consumer demand, which is increasingly shifting its sights away from desktop to mobile.
Analysts believe that Microsoft's decision to make Word, Excel and PowerPoint for the iPad and iPhone and their Android counterparts is mostly due to the fact that limiting the functionality of these apps did not provide enough incentive for users to purchase an Office 365 subscription. To take the bait, users will need to do more than view their documents on their tablets and smartphones.
Microsoft has released a press statement that says, “Microsoft took the next step to bring the productivity of Office to everyone with new Office apps and experiences for the iPhone and iPad, a preview of Office apps for Android tablets, and the ability for customers using these devices to create and edit Office content without a subscription.”
So what is the logic behind this move? Microsoft would like you to believe that it’s all business as usual.
“It’s an extension of the strategy that we’ve got. It’s not a total strategic shift, as much of an extension of the existing strategy”, the company told TheVerge
For those who are wondering whether this will be a setback to Microsoft’s revenue, it should be noted that the company won’t be extending the free functionality to businesses, which is the major source of revenue for the company.
This means that consumers with documents on OneDrive for Business or Drop box for business will have to still pay for subscription. So, it will continue to generate revenue from businesses that rely on its productivity apps and cloud services.
Interestingly, this piece of news comes just a few days after Microsoftannounced its strategic deal with Dropbox that will allow Office software users to manage and share files through Dropbox’s website and mobile app. Microsoft said the functionality would be included in the next updates to the Office mobile apps, to be rolled out in the next few weeks, and online accessibility would be available in the first half of 2015.
Microsoft Office apps can be downloaded from the Google Play store and Apple app store.

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