Is Microsoft Office for iOS Behind The Apple/Microsoft App Battle?

Yesterday we covered that Microsoft was having trouble getting its SkyDrive app approved by Apple, as Microsoft didn’t want to give Apple a 30% cut of subscriptions. However, it looks like there might be more going on there than just SkyDrive. According to a report from AllThingsD, the real battle is over Microsoft Office for iOS.

Office for iPad

According to their sources:

Sources familiar with the ongoing negotiations between Apple and Microsoft tell AllThingsD that the companies are at loggerheads not over the 30 percent commission Apple asks of storage upgrade sales made through SkyDrive, but over applying that same commission to Office 365 subscriptions sold through Microsoft Office for iOS, which is expected to launch sometime next year.

Apparently, Microsoft wants to alter the 70/30 split down a bit — but it’s not clear what they want it to be. Apple is being unbending on this matter, sticking to their guns.

It’s an interesting conundrum — we’ve been waiting on Office for iOS for a really, really long time. It keeps resurfacing then disappearing, and very little hard information remains. It would be a very useful app to have available to be sure, and Microsoft is still a big enough fish that courting their business is generally a good idea. However, if Apple bends the rules for them, does that mean they’d do the same for Adobe? Amazon? EA? I can’t imagine Apple would be too keen on changing policy on this matter.

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