Nadella will announce the launch of Microsoft Office for iPad at the event, according to reports by The Verge and ZDNet. The event, which is supposed to be a briefing about the intersection of cloud and mobile computing, will take place in San Francisco on the morning of March 27.
Unsurprisingly, the apps will require that users have an active Office 365 account, and they’re expected to have features that are very close to those currently available for Office on the iPhone.
The news comes following Microsoft’s announcement of a new Office 365 Personal subscription option, which allows users to purchase a discounted subscription ($6.99 per month, or $69.99 a year) that licenses Office for use on one computer and one tablet. Right now, the only tablets that users can choose from are Windows tablets, but it looks like that may be changing in the near future.
Microsoft is trying to make greater inroads with users on Apple’s platforms: the company released a free Mac version of its OneNote note taking software today in a move to compete against Evernote. Apple, meanwhile, released its iWork suite of productivity apps for free to new Mac, iPhone and iPad buyers last year in a stab at Office’s market share on the Mac and iOS. While Microsoft said that releasing iWork for free was an attempt to “catch up” with Office on the Surface, it seems clear that the company wants to compete with Apple on their turf.
Microsoft isn’t commenting on the reports. The company has said that it will release a version of its productivity suite for the iPad, but the company hasn’t publicly given a timeline.