Reminder: Office 2013 does not come with the Surface Pro

One of the biggest selling points for the Windows RT version of Surface, and indeed for all of the tablets running on Windows RT, was that it came with a free version of Office 2013 Home and Student RT. Microsoft made it a big bullet point that the addition of Office on Windows RT tablets made them a bigger value than other tablets in the same price range.

Later this month, Microsoft is supposed to launch Surface Pro, the new version of Surface with an Intel processor running a full version of Windows 8 Pro. There are also rumors, still unconfirmed by Microsoft, that the Windows 8 and 7 versions of Office 2013 could launch at the end of January, around the same time the Surface is supposed to go on sale.

We have already read comments to our news stories and forums with our readers speculating that Microsoft might do us a solid and include some kind of free version of Office 2013 pre-loaded with the Surface Pro. So we decided to contact Microsoft and see if that would indeed happen, maybe/hoping, that they might have a change of heart.

Alas, our Microsoft contacts have confirmed to Neowin that there are no such plans for Office 2013 and that it will indeed be sold as a separate product for Surface Pro owners. According to their statement, " ... customers will be able to choose the Office that best suits their needs."

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32 Comments

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in that line of thinking, I can think of some other software suites that would fit my bill.
I think it's stupid MS doesn't include them too!!!! /s

Seems strange, if you are a 'Pro' then you need office right? Why is this thing called the Surface Pro if it does not include office?

fine..... ms will add office. But what version?
and are you willing to pay for it too? So the price will go up another $100,=?

jeez....

the comparison page on the ms site ALWAYS stated the Pro has NO Office included.

surface pro should come with office. I think that since it is Microsoft's 1st party tablet, they need to give it the same special treatment as RT to push it ahead of competition

OEM's whine about everything, but they probably would justifiably be aggrieved if MS do bundle office.

And not to mention, competitors in the "Office software" market won't be happy either. Think web browsers. There is not much care for Surface RT because the lack of competition in that realm, only Asus I believe bothered with it.

It'll be fun for the sales people explaining why the cheaper Surface comes with Office but the more expensive Surface Pro does not.

They may bundle the two together as an incentive if the Pro doesn't sell too well. Some ways down the road though.

Regardless, none of this should come as a surprise. I don't believe many laptops/ultrabooks come pre-loaded with Office either.

Would have made a nice incentive, but I'm sure they expect it to sell well when first released so why throw away extra revenue when they don't have to. I'm interested to read user reviews of Pro, Price aside, I still don't understand the interest in RT.

They had to include in on the RT unless they wanted to sell "OfficeRT" at retail stores...

They won't put Office on the Pro...doesn't make any sense. Home users likely already own a copy of Office on their desktop, they can then install this on their Pro as well.

Enterprise users likely have a EA of some form to load the Surface Pro with Office and any other enterprise applications.

I am buying an 128GB Surface Pro.

Exactly. Besides, what SKU of Office 2013 should they include? Should it be the Home & Student SKU that the Windows RT devices have? Perhaps it should be one with Outlook? What about Publisher, Access and InfoPath?

Which SKU would people who are whinging about what I see as a common sense position recommend be pre-installed on the device? What about other companies then claiming Microsoft is acting anti-competitively because they're offering software that costs hundreds of dollars for (potentially) free or heavily subsidised on their devices, but the OEM would have to cover that cost themselves to offer the same deal?

Also, if I have a copy of Home & Student, why should I be forced to buy it again with the device when I may have an extra license for it already? What about SA customers who are already licensed for it and don't want to buy a copy with the laptop that they don't need? What about people who wish to choose the Office 365 subscriptions and get the software that way, why should they be forced to buy it twice?

It's so easy to just demand that Microsoft bundle it, but all that shows is a complete lack of understanding of how things work in the real world.

norseman said,
Why would it? Was this posted just to get complaints?

because if you don't educate people they will assume...... and assuming leads to lawsuits.....

neonspark said,
and lawsuits without merit get tossed out faster than paris Hilton can get drunk.

and that stops people from filing a time wasting suit?... and the news story from the suit isn't good either...

neufuse said,

because if you don't educate people they will assume...... and assuming leads to lawsuits.....


Indeed true. When people ASSume, lawsuits are not too far behind.

norseman said,
Why would it? Was this posted just to get complaints?

It doesn't strike you as odd that "Microsoft Surface" comes with Office 2013 and "Microsoft Surface Pro" does not? I find that a bit odd...

Shadrack said,

It doesn't strike you as odd that "Microsoft Surface" comes with Office 2013 and "Microsoft Surface Pro" does not? I find that a bit odd...

Windows RT comes with free Office, Windows 8 does not. Office is an free incentive for people to join the world of Windows RT instead of the traditional Windows.

Surface Pro is a Windows 8 tablet-PC so there is no reason to assume that it comes with free Office. But people often feel they deserve something because they assumed it so Neowin is smart to remind people.

But while I dont find it odd, I do think it is stupid. Microsoft needs to push Surface Pro for business users before all managers world wide have convinced their board that they 'need' iPads on the workfloor. Giving away Office for free is a small gesture but it can greatly increase sales.

I'm sure people buying "pro" will know the difference and what makes it "pro" over the just "Surface". I just think Microsoft would have done better if they would have named the two "Microsoft Surface RT" and "Microsoft Surface x86" or something like that.

Why? Because "Pro" to Microsoft has almost always meant top of the line (except Ultimate > Pro).

Shadrack said,
I'm sure people buying "pro" will know the difference and what makes it "pro" over the just "Surface".

you assume too much. consider most people buying pc don't know much about them. So far they saw the ADS for the RT, and probably know there is office, so for them will be that the PRO is just better/faster can run old apps. i'm sure MS won't put BIG ads saying there is no office there.

Shadrack said,

It doesn't strike you as odd that "Microsoft Surface" comes with Office 2013 and "Microsoft Surface Pro" does not? I find that a bit odd...


I think the challenge comes from the fact that there's only one version of Office for RT, but several versions for Pro.

A person who is paying for a Surface Pro may not want part of the price covering a version of Office they aren't interested in.

Though, in fairness, they could still include a bottom of the barrel Office experience with a special pricing structure to upgrade to one of the full editions from there.

Though, in even more fairness, the low-end Office web apps *are* free, and could be considered as serving that purpose.