Microsoft Hints Office 16 Could Get Released on Windows Phone, as Well
Office 16 is said to be the single project over at Microsoft that Bill Gates is still working on. With hundreds of millions of users all over the world, no wonder everybody is looking forward to the release.
Microsoft is planning some big changes for the next version of its productivity suite Office, including the return of Clippy, as some recent rumors have suggested. And if we take into account that Bill Gates is also part of the team, then it definitely sounds exciting.
Microsoft has already started sending out invites to beta testers who want to try out the new Office 16, which means the upcoming version of the software will be released not only on Windows on desktops, tablets, and laptops, but also on devices running Windows Phone.
Here’s the email that was sent out and was first spotted by WinBeta:
“Many months ago we opened a process to allow our individual customers to indicate their interest in being considered for future Microsoft Office Pre-Release feedback programs.
At this time our records indicate that you have successfully completed our nomination form and are currently in a holding pattern waiting to be considered for a program(s). If you no longer wish to be considered, you can remove your information by emailing us.
Here’s a bit of background on how the programs will work. After you complete the onboarding steps below, you will be added to our list of available participants.
As features and experiences become ready for feedback, we will contact participants meeting the necessary profile with details about that program and extend an invitation to provide feedback.
The programs will vary in length from a few weeks to as long as several months. As cloud services and devices become more ubiquitous in our lives, it’s an exciting new landscape ahead with endless possibilities! We look forward to exploring it with you and making the next wave of Office products the best we’ve offered to date.”
Right now, all Windows Phone devices ship with a free version of Office, and Microsoft wants to maintain this with the future release, as well. Office products are perhaps the first that come into the mind of regular consumers, so they represent a key in Microsoft’s business.
Microsoft could also merge its mobile platforms, which means a single Office SKU will be offered for a unified version of Windows RT and Windows Phone. Of course, there are big chances for Microsoft to kill Windows RT as it is currently totally irrelevant.
As we have recently reported, Microsoft could also rebrand Windows Phone to just Windows, and Nokia Lumia devices could also be named just Nokia. With this strategy, Microsoft looks to unify its operating system and offerings.
Office 16 is expected to be here by mid-2015, and its official launch is very likely to take place around the debut of Windows 10, so that’s when we’ll have more details about it.