Microsoft announces Office Universal for Windows Phones
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Today Microsoft announced its plans to release for Office Universal apps to be usable with phones running Windows 10. iOS and Android devices have already seen some Office productivity apps released, yet the Universal applications are exclusive for products making use of the Windows 10 operating system. These apps are similar to their counterparts on other mobile operating systems, yet it seems that the Office team has taken special care to make sure that a feeling of continuity is easily felt between the different sized screens on Windows devices.
An interesting change for the mobile touch interface is outlined in Microsoft’s Office blog. Commands and controls now appear at the bottom of the screen for easier editing with one hand only, and each version is tweaked slightly for the different form factors. This release could prove to be a valuable addition for those on the fence in deciding between brands of tablets and phones. While iOS and Android products require a Microsoft account of 365 subscription in order to do anything beyond viewing documents, Windows phones will be receiving Office Universal applications for free.
Considering that the extra fees have been largely responsible for complaints and lukewarm reception of the apps on existing devices, this new free offering for Windows phones may change how consumers view Office on mobile.
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