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Microsoft doubles down on Office apps, services for Android tablets

LG and Sony, plus more than a dozen regional device makers sign deals with Microsoft to bundle Office apps and services -- such as Word, OneNote and Skype -- on their Android devices.

The Word app for Android tablets lets you edit text documents, adding photos, tables and other visual extras. Josh Miller/CNET

Microsoft is adding 20 more global and local device makers to the list of companies that are bundling Office apps and services with their Android devices.

The expanded list of companies signing pre-installation deals with Microsoft include LG and Sony, according to a blog post on Tuesday announcing the list.

Most of the names on the list are regional device makers, including: Axdia International GMBH, Germany; Cube, China; DL, Brazil; General Procurement, U.S.; Grupo Nucleo, Argentina; Haier, China; Inco, Mexico; Ionik GMBH, Germany; Iview, US and Latin America; Multilaser, Brazil; Noblex, Argentina; Pacific (Vulcan), Mexico; Philco, Argentina; Positivo, Brazil; Prestigio, EMEA; Teclast, China; TMAX Digital, North America; and Wortmann, Germany.

Microsoft officials said the company now has 31 partners that "will offer Android tablets pre-installed with Word, Excel, PowerPoint, OneNote, OneDrive and Skype in the near future."

These apps and services will be available on "a new LG tablet, and Sony will include them on their Xperia Z4 tablet in the next 90 days," the blog post added.

Microsoft announced similar Android bundling deals with Samsung, Dell, Pegatron and eight regional device makers in March.

Microsoft also signed a deal with Android operating system vendor Cyanogen in April, via which the two will integrate certain Microsoft apps and services with Cyanogen's Open OS Platform, due out later this year.

In case anyone was wondering -- as I was, myself -- Microsoft is not replacing its Android patent-licensing strategy with these new app-bundling deals. Microsoft is continuing to sign patent deals with makers of Android and Chrome OS devices.

This story originally posted as "Microsoft signs Office app, service bundling deals with 20 more Android device makers" on ZDNet.