Microsoft Expands Its Mobile App Lineup with Wunderlist Acquisition

Posted on June 2, 2015 by Paul Thurrott in Mobile with 0

Microsoft Expands Its Mobile App Lineup with Wunderlist Acquisition

Continuing its bid to own mobile productivity, Microsoft today announced that it is acquiring 6Wunderkinder, makers of the to-do list app Wunderlist. The acquisition comes on the heels of a year of rapid growth in Microsoft mobile apps, and follows similar acquisitions of Accompli and Sunrise.

“The addition of Wunderlist to the Microsoft product portfolio fits squarely with our ambition to reinvent productivity for a mobile-first, cloud-first world,” OneNote general manager Eran Megiddo writes in a post to The Official Microsoft Blog. “It further demonstrates Microsoft’s commitment to delivering market leading mobile apps across the platforms and devices our customers use – for mail, calendaring, messaging, notes and now tasks.”

Wunderlist claims over 13 million users, who the firms says has “collectively created more than one billion to-dos.

Microsoft’s infatuation with single-purpose Android and iOS apps is well documented. But where might Wunderlist end up within Microsoft? Obviously within Office. But let’s speculate—or at least openly “wunder”—a bit.

After all, that a OneNote GM would get to write the blog post about this acquisition suggests that Wunderlist may now fall under that group and might therefore be made part of OneNote. But tasks/to-dos have historically been part of Outlook, which is where the Accompli and Sunrise acquisitions ended up (or soon will). However … if you look at how tasks are handled on other mobile platforms, it’s often via a dedicated standalone app. For example, on iOS Apple includes a Reminders app.

Or maybe we could just see how Microsoft describes it.

“Customers can expect the app to remain free in all of its existing markets,” that blog post notes. “There will be no price changes for Wunderlist Pro or Wunderlist for Business customers and the service will continue to support a wide range of third-party apps and integrated services.”

So standalone app, right?

Not exactly. Let’s keep reading.

“We [will] build on and apply Wunderlist’s innovations to Microsoft’s apps and services,” the blog post concludes. I’m guessing that a backend service will be infused into apps like Outlook and OneNote, as well as their respective web interfaces. In this way, it could work like Yammer or Skype perhaps.

Wunderlist is currently available on iPhoneiPadApple WatchMacAndroidWindows PhoneWindows and the web. And Wunderlist founder and CEO Christian Reber will continue to lead the team and product strategy, he says in a blog post of his own.

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