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Office App for iPhone Available for Office 365 Customers

Microsoft on Friday released Office Mobile for iPhone, a free-of-charge app from Apple's iTunes store that lets mobile users access and edit Microsoft Word, PowerPoint and Excel documents stored in the cloud.

The app works for iOS 6.1 or later, and requires an iPhone 4, 4S or 5, or a fifth-generation iPod Touch, according to this blog post. Additionally, the app is only available to Office 365 subscribers whose plans include support for Office desktop applications and Office Mobile. These plans are:

  • Office 365 Home Premium
  • Office 365 Small Business Premium
  • Office 365 Midsize Business
  • Office 365 Enterprise E3 and E4
  • Office 365 Education A3 and A4
  • Office 365 ProPlus
  • Office 365 University
  • Some Office 365 for Government plans

Those using the free trial version of Office 365 also have access to Office Mobile for iPhone.

Windows Phone users automatically have Office Mobile built into their devices, and do not require an Office 365 subscription to use it.

Excel on the Office Mobile for iPhone app.

Apple iOS apps for Microsoft's OneNote and Lync 2013 products already exist, but this is the first time Microsoft has made the full Office suite -- except for Outlook -- available to iPhone users. "Outlook Mobile is exclusively available on Windows phones. However, iPhone offers a native Exchange ActiveSync email experience in the email app," Microsoft explained.

While the app was designed for iPhone users, Microsoft did not outright say that it is unusable on the iPad, but suggested that Office Web Apps would work better on the larger tablet screen.

"We built Office Mobile for iPhone to ensure a great Office experience when using a small screen device, similar to Office Mobile for Windows Phone. If you have an iPad, we recommend using Office Web Apps that provide the best Office experience on a tablet. We have made great enhancements to Office Web Apps including an improved touch experience for tablet users," Microsoft's blog post said. "Like all iPhone apps, Office Mobile can work on iPad, either small or '2X' scaled up, but you'll have a more satisfying experience using Office Web Apps." 

For the past year, there have been rumors that Microsoft was developing an Office app for the iPad as well as the iPhone, though Microsoft has been tight-lipped in its responses regarding the iPad reports. In a Bloomberg interview earlier this year, Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer responded to a question about a potential iPad Office app with "I have nothing to say on that topic."

About the Author

Gladys Rama is the site editor for RCPmag.com.

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