Microsoft today announced Office for Android and iOS will be free. Users no longer require an Office 365 subscription to store and edit files online. The Android version of Office will be released in 2015.
The free version of Office for iOS and Android will only be available for consumers, according to Microsoft. Companies still need an Office 365 subscription to use the apps. Consumers are also able to get additional storage by purchasing an Office 365 license. Users without a subscription will be able to store data up to 15GB, Office 365 subscribers will soon have unlimited storage space.
Microsoft will also release an iPhone version of their Office app, the version for the iPad was already released and will receive an update today. Microsoft already released a preview version of Office for Android, a public release is planned for 2015.
By making Office free for consumers Microsoft wants to stimulate the use of Office by everyone, everywhere. Presumably Microsoft wants to thwart its competition by removing the biggest obstacle (payments) for usage of Office on mobile devices. Making Office for free on Windows Phone is unnecessary; Office is already preinstalled on Windows Phone devices for years.