Microsoft Proudly Declares 12 Million Office For The iPad Downloads

Rivals Microsoft and Apple both stand to benefit from the former making available its Office productivity suite on the latter's iPad devices, and having now done that, the reception by users has been encouraging. Barely more than a week after launching its suite of apps on iPad, Microsoft took to Twitter to announce 12 million combined downloads of Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and OneNote, each of which are available individually for free.

This launch was a long time coming. It had been rumored for the past couple of years, but rivalries being what they are, Microsoft avoided iOS longer than it should have. Perhaps that will be a lesson for next time -- as for right now, Microsoft's Office apps are proving popular on the iPad. As was the case four days after launch, the top free app download on iPad remains Word, followed by Excel and PowerPoint taking the No. 2 and No. 3 sports, respectively. OneNote sits at No. 8 on the freebie chart.

Office iPad 12 Million

What isn't known at this point is the number of Office 365 subscriptions all these downloads have translated into. While the apps are free, users have to pony up $99/year for an Office 365 subscription in order to fully unlock all the editing features. Doing so allows users to install Office of iPad apps on up to five tablets, plus five copies across Office for PCs and Macs.

"With one subscription all of your devices are covered, so you can work the way you want," Microsoft stated in a blog post.

Microsoft said it designed the iPad versions from the ground up to feature large touch areas on the Ribbon and in overlay menus, and to support iPad features like voice dictation and AirPlay, among other capabilities.