Microsoft updates Office for Android & iPhone – free app to view & edit Office docs

by David Needle

March 27 2014

Though it was hardly as significant, lost in the buzz over today's announcement of Office for iPad today, Microsoft also quietly updated a mobile version of Office for Android phones and the iPhone. 

Significantly, unlike the iPad version, Microsoft Office for Mobile lets you view and edit Office docs without needing to pay for an Office 365 subscription. 

However, you’ll still need Office 365 to also create Office apps. 

Microsoft Office for Mobile isn’t new, but the ability to edit Office files, without an Office 365 subscription, is. Microsoft calls it “the official Office companion optimized for your [Android phone or iPhone].”

And while you’re limited by the small screen, you can use Microsoft Office Mobile in a pinch to access and edit Office documents from your phone.

Microsoft also emphasizes the ability to access Office files from wherever you are, assuming you have a smartphone and connection to the Internet. For example, you can use Microsoft Office Mobile to access any Office documents stored on OneDrive, OneDrive for Business, or SharePoint.

Other features include “Resume Reading” which lets you resume reading where you left off on another connected device if, for example, you last viewed the document on your PC or tablet. This applies specifically to Word documents saved to Microsoft’s OneDrive, or OneDrive for Business on your phone.

You can also work on Office documents offline and they will be saved online once the device is reconnected to a network or via Wi-Fi.

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