Is Microsoft Building Apps for Apple’s iPad?

Even among Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) enthusiasts, Microsoft’s (NASDAQ:MSFT) Office suite has always been one of the most popular productivity packages, with its aptly named Word as ubiquitous within the word-processing arena as Google (NASDAQ:GOOG) is in the Internet search world.

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For years, Microsoft has been able to maintain that dominance by creating its Office suite for Mac computers, but word processing is no longer done exclusively on computers. The move to tablets has certainly given Apple an advantage in the hardware department, but it’s also helped its software sales. Apple’s own office tools — including Pages, its word-processing program — are now available in app form for iPad users who have, until now, had few other options.

But recognizing the potential to fall behind, Microsoft is preparing to release its full Office suite for not only Apple’s iPad, but for Android tablets as well. The company is targeting November of this year for the release of both, according to a source that has seen Microsoft Office running on iPad first-hand. That person told BGR that it looks almost identical to a previous leak from The Daily a few months back, despite the fact that Microsoft flat out denied the app was authentic.

With an iPad app, it stands to reason BGR will be creating an app for the iPhone and iPod touch as well, rather than just the iPad, as BGR was told the loading screen in the app clearly said “Office for iOS” and not just iPad, although there is probably less demand for word processing tools on devices with such small screens.

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