Microsoft may be preparing to throw another Office-based curve ball by launching the touch-centric version of its productivity suite on Google Android devices before it lands on Windows 8.

According to the well-connected Mary Jo Foley's of ZDNet's sources, the Android OS is next in Microsoft's sights for Word, Excel and PowerPoint touch, following the roll-out on iPad earlier this year.

Microsoft prioritised the iOS version in order to capitalise on its greater-than-Windows market share (and probably just to shut people up), so adopting Android next would represent a similar strategic manoeuvre.

The software giant has made it clear in recent months it will no longer discriminate against rival platforms and will instead seek to have its products and services available on as many as possible.

Conceding defeat or the smart move?

The launch of Office touch for Windows had been rumoured for the autumn of 2014, but it now appears Microsoft may wait until early 2015 before pushing out the next generation suite on for its own operating system.

Meanwhile, the Android version will arrive before the end of 2014, according to Foley's sources.