Microsoft beefs up mobile support for all phones

iOS and Android both get some love with new features and support.

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Microsoft may be spinning its wheels with Windows Phone, but that's not stopping it from supporting Android and iOS. The company has just made a pair of announcements around the two platforms regarding new and improved apps.

Word, Excel, and PowerPoint for iOS all received an update earlier this week that added support for opening documents from and saving the documents to the Box cloud storage system. In all three cases, the apps have been updated and should be available for download to your iPhone or iPad.

In addition to the Box support, Word now makes it easy for you to discover and install all of the other Office apps available for the iPhone and iPad. Office is free on devices with screens under 10 inches, so all iOS devices except the iPad Pro.

Meanwhile, Microsoft Garage, the group that allows Microsoft employees to work on non-company projects (similar to Google's "20% time" for extracurricular projects) has introduced three new and updated apps for Android just in time for the Mobile World Congress 2016 show in Barcelona.

The first app is called Kaizala, which means "What happened?" in the Indian language of Marathi. It's a combination of a chat application and task assignment and scheduler that lets you assign tasks and confirm someone's availability.

The second app is called Sprightly, which allows users to create content such as promotional material, flyers, or e-cards. You can create a catalog or share pricelists with your buyers on Facebook or Twitter.

Both of the applications are available on Google Play. They require Android devices running on KitKat and above versions of the OS.

Finally, there is the Hub Keyboard app to simplify multitasking on a single screen. It uses the native soft keyboard as the unifying hub for multiple apps, so you can cut and paste from one app to another all from the same keyboard. You can also perform searches and share contact information.

While Microsoft is showing off Windows Mobile 10 at Mobile World Congress, the platform suffered a stinging loss as Tumblr, the popular blogging service, has abandoned the platform. Users noticed earlier this week that the app was gone from the Windows app store. When asked on Twitter, Tumblr Support was unambiguous.

"Thanks for asking about the Windows Phone app. We’re no longer supporting it, but you can still enjoy Tumblr by visiting in your mobile browser. I’m sorry for the inconvenience and I hope you’ll write back if there’s anything else I can help you with."

It's not often an app is actually removed from a store. Usually it's just abandoned and never updated again. I saw plenty of that when I had a Windows Phone device. Again, it's not a good sign.

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