Office 2013 is sad on touch devices

Peter Bright for Ars Technica:

These are not touch applications, and you will not want to use them on touch systems. They’re designed for mice and they’re designed for keyboards, and making the buttons on the ribbon larger does nothing to change that fundamental fact.

This is exactly what I’ve said all along. Desktop apps do not transition to a touch-enabled environment very well at all. No matter how much Microsoft wants it to work, it’s not going to happen. This is why Apple developed touch-enabled versions of Keynote, Numbers and Pages.



  • It is going to be painful for many, that is certain. We just rolled out HP convertible tablets here at work and it has been a painful transition … and no one is doing anything strange yet.

    However, my dad can use his iPad to do more with a computing device today then he ever did in the past with a “full PC”. THAT’S power.

    • Kriztyan

      In this case, less is more. Sometimes the important part is what you take out, not what you put in. Microsoft does not seem to grasp this concept at all.

  • D Pauw

    Office team going for two for two as far as messing up Microsoft’s tablets?

    It is sad because MS has shown they have a clue with Metro but they then turn around an insist on the ribbon for touch UI for Explorer and Office.

  • No better example of the difference between Apple and Microsoft’s approach to the tablet than those non-touch optimized option screens (all controlled via an onscreen keyboard). Yuck.

  • gjgustav

    This brings me back to my question of how the Surface is going to offer anything more than the Windows tablets that don’t sell well today. Someone said to me “touch-optimized Windows apps.” If MS can’t/won’t do it, do we expect other Windows developers to do it?

    I still contend that the Surface will offer nothing new to enterprise that Windows tablets don’t already offer now. And today’s Windows tablets aren’t kicking the iPad out of enterprise, so how will the Surface?

  • Kriztyan

    I got to use Windows 8 Preview release on a touch screen Dell. I was not impressed. We had to go to YouTube to see how the gestures worked. Not very intuitive at all. Not very responsive ether. Having stuff running in Metro and in the Windows environment simultaneously was very confusing. My prediction is that Microsoft is in a lot of trouble.