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Apple Targets Microsoft Office With Free iWork Apps for New Mac’s, iPhone’s, and iPad’s

On Tuesday Apple announced that it will make its iWork applications freely available for anyone who bought a new Macintosh, iPhone, or iPad device.

Apple also announced that it will provide the latest version of the Macintosh OS, Mavericks, for free.

These latest announcements by Apple are another way the company is striking back against Microsoft as Microsoft does not currently offer its Office software on iPads. Microsoft says it has plans to develop & offer its Office software for devices like the iPad in the near future. No release dates have been announced yet from Microsoft.

This compounds the many problems Microsoft has had with attempting to sell its Surface tablets, in addition to Windows Phones to compete against the tablets & smartphones offered by Apple & Google.

A long-term threatening point for Microsoft was also mentioned in this article as IDC, a research company, predicts that sales of tablets will surpass those of PCs in the fourth quarter of this year and on an annual basis in 2015.

If this prediction plays out, this means that one of the technology markets dominated by Microsoft will be overshadowed by a technology market that is currently dominated by Apple & Google. This means that Microsoft’s revenue from the sales of PC’s will decrease due to the shrinking of that market while Apple’s revenue will increase due to the increasing sales in the tablet market.

With Apple offering its own free iWork (Office-style) applications for new users on iPads and iPhones it appears that Apple has beaten Microsoft again in the mobile apps arena.

Even when Microsoft releases its own mobile apps of Microsoft Office for the iPad and other tablet devices, unless if Apple’s iWork apps don’t function very well or if they provide fewer benefits to users compared to the Microsoft Office mobile apps; no one will bother purchasing Microsoft Office apps when they can get Apple’s iWork apps for free.

As mentioned in the article “that shift to mobile devices and low-cost software is why Microsoft is trying to shift from being a traditional software company into one that sells Internet services and devices, said Ross Rubin, an independent consumer technology analyst for Reticle Research. The company could reduce the upfront price for its software and charge people more over time for the services through subscriptions”.

This article provides details on how Microsoft is still behind Apple in the tablet and mobile development markets. It also shows how Apple is marketing specific offerings and changes in its software platforms to new customers in order to draw them away from using any current & potential Microsoft products. Finally, the article shows how Microsoft is trying to counter its losses in the mobile devices markets by selling more Internet-based software services and devices, and also by concentrating on selling software services to businesses instead of consumers.

To me this article seems to highlight the new relationship & business state between the old rival companies of Apple & Microsoft as they have each developed at selling different types of software & hardware devices in completely different ways. Apple continues to do well in the mobile markets while Microsoft is still locked in the PC market while trying to sell more Internet-based software applications for businesses.

Please see the article link below:

http://www.nytimes.com/2013/10/23/technology/with-new-apple-ipads-tablets-move-closer-to-passing-pcs-in-sales.html?src=recg

By Matthew Salava

A senior Information Technology student at FSU. I will be graduating in Spring 2014.

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