Report: Microsoft Office for iPad may be released before Windows touchscreen counterpart

According to reports, a new, touchscreen iteration of Microsoft’s flagship Office productivity software may be hitting the iPad before it’s touchscreen counterpart is released for Windows. 

The Office for iPad software, which is apparently codenamed ‘Miramar’, was first hinted at by Steve Ballmer last year – and a report by ZDNet seems to corroborate that. According to ZDNet’s Mary Jo Foley, Office for iPad may be coming far sooner than expected, and may even be slated for release before a touchable version of Microsoft Office for Windows 8.

While Office for iPad was initially supposed to be released after the Windows 8 iteration, some senior Microsoft leaders had a change of heart last year. According to Foley, Ballmer OK’d the Office team’s suggestion that the software be released as soon as it was ready – despite this meaning that it would hit the market before the Windows 8 version. And according to the publication’s sources, Office for iPad may require a subscription to Office 365 Home Premium – which recently hit 3.5 million subscribers, and which encompasses a number of Microsoft Office applications including Word, Excel and PowerPoint.

So what’s the release date for the Office for iPad software? Reports initially hinted at Fall of 2014, but according to Foley the public may see it in the first half of 2014. Since Office for iPad is in an advanced stage of development, we can look forward to a release sooner rather than later, which is good news for iPad owners.