Rumor: Microsoft mulls native Office for Linux


— 12:57 PM on February 7, 2013

Linux seems to be getting first-class treatment lately. As Valve continues to push its Steam service on the platform, Microsoft may be mulling a native Linux version of its Office productivity suite.

That's the scuttlebutt over at the Free Open-Source Developers' European Meeting, at least. Phoronix was on the scene in Brussels, and it heard that "Microsoft is having a 'meaningful look' at a full Linux port of Office thanks to Linux showing signs of commercial viability on the desktop." The port would be a "fully native implementation" of the software suite, Phoronix says.

Linux geeks are probably happy enough with LibreOffice, but that may not be the case for government agencies and businesses that have switched away from Windows. Compatibility with Office documents is great; Office itself is better, provided you can afford it.

The prospect of a native Office for Linux isn't so crazy, anyway. Microsoft has been offering a Mac version of Office since practically forever, and according to Phoronix, an Android version of the software is also rumored to be in the works. Supporting as many platforms and devices as possible would also fit with Microsoft's new Office 365 subscription model.

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