Since its release to the App Store and iTunes near the end of March, Microsoft Office apps for the iPad have been downloaded more than 27 million times, according to Microsoft Microsoft's Julia White said during a conference in Houston this week. As noted by Business Insider, that is more than double the amount of downloads previously reported for Microsoft Office iPad apps.     

Microsoft Office tweeted April 3, "More than 12 million downloads of Word, Excel, PPT & OneNote for iPad from the App Store."    

Office programs apps available for the iPad from the App Store include Word, PowerPoint and Excel. The apps, which are free to download, allow users to read Word documents, use Excel data and use PowerPoint. To get the full features, Office users will need an Office 365 subscription.    

"The apps have the robust capabilities and familiar look and feel that is unmistakably Office, while offering a fantastic touch experience built from the ground up for iPad," Microsoft said. "With the free versions of the apps, you can read your Word documents, view your Excel data and present with PowerPoint. Your documents will look as good as they do on your PC and Mac, and better than ever on your iPad.    

"Office documents look better than ever on iPad. They look just as they do on your PC or Mac," Microsoft said in a news release. "In Word, images, tables, SmartArt, footnotes, equations are all there, perfectly formatted. Formulas, charts, sparklines, conditional formatting, and filters in Excel help you make better decisions. PowerPoint presentations pack a punch with transitions, animations, speaker notes and much more. When presenting, you can even use a built-in laser pointer, pens and highlighters to get your point across."    

During its announcement that OS X Mavericks would be free, Apple was slightly ahead of Microsoft when it released its iWork and iLife suite for free, too. Those programs include Pages, Numbers, Keynote, iPhoto, iMovie and GarageBand.    

“This is the biggest day for apps in Apple’s history,” said Eddy Cue, Apple’s senior vice president of Internet Software and Services, in an October 2013 news release. “These new versions deliver seamless experiences across devices that you can’t find anywhere else and are packed with great features like iMovie Theater, Drummer and a new unified file format for iWork documents across all your device."