By Harry McCracken | Thursday, February 11, 2010 at 12:07 pm
Gadget site T3 is reporting that Microsoft has dropped a “hint” that it may be working on a version of Office for the iPad. I hope so–it could be both cool and useful. But the evidence that it’s doing so is paper-thin so far. (I’ve probably asked Microsoft staffers about things they might be working on hundreds of times over the years, and they only rarely say “no comment” or issue a flat denial–their tendency is say that ideas of all sorts sound “interesting.”)
Last April, someone asked a Microsoft exec about Office for the iPhone, and some took his response (“Not yet–keep watching”) as evidence that such a suite was in the works. The only Office/iPhone news since then has been the fact that Office 2010’s Web features will include some basic tools designed to let people view documents on smartphones. Maybe the exec was talking about that. Or maybe Microsoft is working on an iPhone edition of Office. Or maybe he just meant what he said.
Of course, almost thirty years ago Microsoft did become a rabid fan of a new Apple platform, and released a bunch of applications for it. Its enthusiasm seems to have paid off for everybody involved that time around…