Microsoft has been hard at work developing a new version of Microsoft Office that’s much easier to use with touch – instead of through a mouse and keyboard or with a stylus. According to several reports from ZDNet’s Mary Jo Foley, the internal code name is Gemini and the suite of Office applications are going to hit the market sometime next spring. Funny enough, they’re scheduled to hit Android before Windows devices, Foley said in a post on Tuesday.
“Microsoft, that seems so silly!” you might be yelling at the top of your lungs. Except, as Foley explains, it’s not. Microsoft’s goal is actually to get its Office Suite in the hands of as many folks as possible as quickly as it can. Android has a much larger market share than Windows tablets, and so that’s where the company is putting its targets first.
Obviously it worked on the iPad end of the spectrum, the mobile version of Office (pictured above) was downloaded 12 million times in just about a week after Microsoft launched the apps. Foley said the long term goal is for Microsoft to be a “cross-platform software and services provider,” which means it’s not going to only focus on Windows and Windows Phone machines.
Foley said that Microsoft will also release new full versions of Office in early 2015 before it releases the touch-first version designed for mobile devices. The company wrapped up its BUILD developer conference in April, so we’re probably looking at next April for the final unveil.