Microsoft may have released a basic Office app for Android phones almost a year ago, but the company is now building a suite designed specifically for Android tablets. The upcoming release, expected later this year, will join Microsoft’s Office for iPad version as the second major tablet-focused push for the Word, Excel, and PowerPoint. Sources familiar with Microsoft’s plans tell The Verge that the company is currently preparing a private beta test for the Office Android tablet version, and is accepting participants through a special pre-release program. Companies and individuals can register their interest in testing pre-release versions of Office over at Microsoft’s SharePoint site.
Office for Android tablets is expected to include a touch-optimized interface that’s similar to the Office for iPad version. The Android version will reportedly launch ahead of Microsoft’s own finger-friendly version of Office for Windows, which is currently scheduled for early 2015. Microsoft’s plans underscore CEO Satya Nadella’s efforts to focus the company around cloud and mobile. "We will not be bound to one app, one device, in one place," Nadella tweeted, after his appearance at the Code Conference in May. Microsoft is also readying a new version of Office for Mac that will debut later this year.