Apple Foresees The Loss of Office For Mac (?)

Posted:
in Mac Software edited January 2014
With the rumored release of Lasso along side keynote and all the other office-type apps, I'm wondering if Apple is bracing for the day when Ballmer throws a chair and Office for mac is quashed.



If Office for mac were eliminated, it'd decimate the Mac-using population, and damage future sales.



I'm wondering when M$ will see the tiny division as more of a nuisance than profitable.



Office for mac caused a resurgence in Mac sales when it was released because of that settlement back in 1997. Hell, it made the iMac possible.



However, the settlement only stated that M$ had to make office for a total of 5 years. That arrangement ended in 2002.



Is Office on borrowed time? How badly will it hurt Apple if Office disappeared?

Comments

  • Reply 1 of 14
    mr. memr. me Posts: 3,219member
    This issue has been talked to death. However, the basic facts remain. Simply put, Office:mac makes a boatload of money for Microsoft. Far from being a nuisance, the MacBU generates black ink which helps to offset the red ink generated by most of Microsoft's other operations.
  • Reply 2 of 14
    frank777frank777 Posts: 5,773member
    A full fledged iWork suite is only a replacement for AppleWorks.

    AppleWorks co-existed with Office for a long time. It only killed off Microsoft Works, which was no great loss.



    At the very worst, when iWork has seen a few annual revisions it MAY kill off the Office Student and Teacher edition and move the Microsoft suite a bit upmarket.



    And even that is quite suspect. Redmond knows better than to allow Apple an uncontested segment of the education market.
  • Reply 3 of 14
    Besides, by time that happens, parallels software will hopefully be advanced enough that if you have a copy of windows and a copy of office lying around, it won't affect you much.



    In fact, it's much easier to get a pirated version of office for windows anyways.
  • Reply 4 of 14
    I think M$ would dump Office for the Mac if the Mac platform grows too big in their eyes. The five year agreement to maintain Office for the Mac is really powerful for Apple. Not only will they have "legitimate" support for Office, but they can pursue tech that would allow any sort of workaround to run native Windows apps-- Boot Camp, etc. In five years, home computing is going to be shocking-- powerful, flexible, and far less beholden to M$.



    M$ is not averse to losing money to bolster their strategy. Their strategy isn't always successful, but I think it illustrates their mentality. They'd sell their grandmothers if it would have strategic value.
  • Reply 5 of 14
    pbg4 dudepbg4 dude Posts: 1,611member
    MS has already stated the next version of MS Office won't have VBA included. For me, that is the death knell of Office for Mac. Now I'll have to use the Windows version of Excel to program VBA macros as it'll be the only version that includes it.
  • Reply 6 of 14
    mr. memr. me Posts: 3,219member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by ricksbrain


    I think M$ would dump Office for the Mac if the Mac platform grows too big in their eyes. The five year agreement to maintain Office for the Mac is really powerful for Apple. ...



    Microsoft makes its business decisions for business reasons. It is not going to drop Office:mac out of pique or out of the hope that by doing so will slow the Macintosh juggernaut. Microsoft understands better than most that Office:mac freezes-out any serious new commercial third-party entrants. In other words, so long as Office:mac exists Lotus SmartSuite for the Mac won't.



    As for the new Apple/Microsoft five-year agreement, it is strictly marketing. Microsoft continued to develop and sell Macintosh software in the years between the expiration of the old agreement and the signing of the new. As I stated above, Office:mac generates a boatload of money on Microsoft's bottomline. As long as this is the case, we will have Office:mac. It's all about the Benjamins.
  • Reply 7 of 14
    mccrabmccrab Posts: 201member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by PBG4 Dude


    MS has already stated the next version of MS Office won't have VBA included. For me, that is the death knell of Office for Mac. Now I'll have to use the Windows version of Excel to program VBA macros as it'll be the only version that includes it.



    Agreed - this is a very concerning development. What is driving it? Is it too difficult to port the underlying codebase into a Universal Binary or is there something more sinister behind this?



    Can you use RealBasic as a cross-platform alternative and could you for example write external functions in RealBasic?
  • Reply 8 of 14
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by McCrab


    Agreed - this is a very concerning development. What is driving it? Is it too difficult to port the underlying codebase into a Universal Binary or is there something more sinister behind this?



    What's driving it ? As usual, MS cripples their Mac-software, so you can't use the Mac on a pro/corporate level, and is one of the main reasons Windows became so big.

    They did it with Office (why did they leave out Access ?), they did it with Outlook (no playing nice with server/Windows Outlook). They make money form selling Office:Mac, while they keep other vendors at bay. But don't make it *too* good !

    I know several businesses where the *only* reason everyone has to use Windows is because of a crappy networking Outlook:Mac (=Entourage).
  • Reply 9 of 14
    mr. memr. me Posts: 3,219member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by theGAR


    ... I know several businesses where the *only* reason everyone has to use Windows is because of a crappy networking Outlook:Mac (=Entourage).



    FWIW, Entourage 2004 is only minimally compatible with Exchange. Entourage v.X can access Exchange email only via IMAP--placing it on a par with Eudora and AOL Communicator. Outlook 2001 was a free Exchange-exclusive Exchange client for MacOS 9. For Exchange access and administration, it far superior to Entourage 2004. The takeaway message is that Entourage is in no way equal to Outlook.
  • Reply 10 of 14
    slugheadslughead Posts: 1,169member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Mr. Me


    Microsoft makes its business decisions for business reasons. It is not going to drop Office:mac out of pique or out of the hope that by doing so will slow the Macintosh juggernaut. Microsoft understands better than most that Office:mac freezes-out any serious new commercial third-party entrants. In other words, so long as Office:mac exists Lotus SmartSuite for the Mac won't.



    M$ doesn't mind cutting off a finger to save the hand. They spent millions developing handwriting recognition technology in the early 90's so that way all the entry-level companies would stop development, only to drop the project themselves shortly after most everyone had quit.



    Also, let's not forget that the X-box and 360 were loss leaders so they could make money off games.



    If the Mac actually does get even a 10% marketshare, M$ would probably do everything it could to stop it. If that means crippling or stopping Office:Mac, I think they'd do it. Unless, of course, they thought being an app developer for Apple was somehow more profitable than having that marketshare.



    M$ likes to use its monopoly on the OS market to push other products. They even got sued over it. Not having full control over the market would mean they wouldn't have the power to push crap like MSN messenger, internet explorer, or any of their other PC products.
  • Reply 11 of 14
    hirohiro Posts: 2,663member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by PBG4 Dude


    MS has already stated the next version of MS Office won't have VBA included. For me, that is the death knell of Office for Mac. Now I'll have to use the Windows version of Excel to program VBA macros as it'll be the only version that includes it.



    MS is killing VBA entirely as a security measure. Not as an Office::Mac criplper. It just departs a year earlier on the Mac.
  • Reply 12 of 14
    mr. memr. me Posts: 3,219member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by slughead


    M$ doesn't mind cutting off a finger to save the hand. They spent millions developing handwriting recognition technology in the early 90's so that way all the entry-level companies would stop development, only to drop the project themselves shortly after most everyone had quit.



    This is a very bad example. Handwriting recognition is a daunting task. Apple was way ahead of M$ with the handwriting recognition algorithm in the Newton. However, Microsoft has not abandoned handwriting recognition as it is an essential feature of the Tablet PC.

    Quote:
    Originally Posted by slughead


    Also, let's not forget that the X-box and 360 were loss leaders so they could make money off games.



    In this regard, Microsoft is acting like every other game console developer. In so doing, it is losing its shirt. Look--everything can't be a loss-leader, or you go broke.

    Quote:
    Originally Posted by slughead


    If the Mac actually does get even a 10% marketshare, M$ would probably do everything it could to stop it. If that means crippling or stopping Office:Mac, I think they'd do it. Unless, of course, they thought being an app developer for Apple was somehow more profitable than having that marketshare.



    Just because it makes sense to you doesn't mean that it makes sense.

    Quote:
    Originally Posted by slughead


    M$ likes to use its monopoly on the OS market to push other products. They even got sued over it. Not having full control over the market would mean they wouldn't have the power to push crap like MSN messenger, internet explorer, or any of their other PC products.



    You need to keep your facts straight. Microsoft no longer pushes Internet Explorer except as the web browser for Windows. The Mac and Linux versions are no longer in development. As for your other point, Microsoft has a long history of settling for making money in markets that it doesn't dominate. As it looks for ways to expand into new markets, it needs all the money it can get.
  • Reply 13 of 14
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Mr. Me


    In this regard, Microsoft is acting like every other game console developer. In so doing, it is losing its shirt. Look--everything can't be a loss-leader, or you go broke.



    Unless by "every other game console developer," you mean Sega, which, of course, almost went under because of it.



    The Dreamcast, the XBOX, and the 360 are the only consoles released below cost. The PS3 will soon join these.
  • Reply 14 of 14
    backtomacbacktomac Posts: 4,579member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by slughead


    If the Mac actually does get even a 10% marketshare, M$ would probably do everything it could to stop it.



    I with you on this Slug. If Mac marketshare hits 10%, Mac BU somehow will become unprofitable and will get shut down. We've still got a bit to go to hit 10%.
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