Posts Tagged ‘Microsoft Office’

Office 2011 for Mac Available This October

Monday, August 2nd, 2010

Microsoft announced a launch window and pricing for the Office 2011 suite for Mac. It will be available in 100 countries at the end of October this year. Office 2011 for Mac will come in two versions – Office for Mac Home and Student 2011 and Office for Mac Home and Business 2011. It is geared to more closely coincide with the Windows versions of the software.

The Home and Student version will start at $119 or a three-license family pack at $149. The suite includes Word for Mac, PowerPoint for Mac, Excel for Mac and Messenger for Mac. The Home and Business version starts at $199, with a multi-pack option for $279. This suite includes Word for Mac, PowerPoint for Mac, Excel for Mac, Outlook for Mac and Messenger for Mac. A Home and Student license can be upgraded to Home and Business through an online upgrade option.

A special edition has been created for academic use. Microsoft Office for Mac Academic 2011 will be available for $99 at authorized academic stores. This suite includes Word for Mac, PowerPoint for Mac, Excel for Mac, Outlook for Mac and Messenger for Mac. It was designed for higher education students, staff and faculty, and includes a single installation.

Microsoft also announced upgrade options for Office 2008 purchases made from now until the launch date. If you purchase Office 2008 for Mac between August 1 and November 30, 2010 at Microsoft or an authorized reseller, you may upgrade to 2011 for no additional cost. You need to register at www.microsoft.com/mac/techg buy December 31, 2010 to qualify.

Microsoft is Getting Smarter

Thursday, May 20th, 2010

Microsoft announced on its Windows Phone Blog that the new Office Mobile 2010 is available for free. There is, of course, a catch. You have to own a previous version of mobile Office. Even with the catch, it seems that Microsoft has finally figured out what Google has known all along. People like FREE apps.

Microsoft has been terribly slow on the uptake when it comes to free products. It’s flagship Microsoft Office Suite is the priciest of the popular productivity suites, and there were no signs of letting up on the steep entry fees. Google Apps, Zoho, Open Office, and even WordPerfect were able to take full advantage of Microsoft’s lack of free options. It seems that Microsoft has finally gotten smart and is offering its software as a free upgrade.

Does this mean that Microsoft will start offering more stuff for free? Hopefully, but unlikely. Microsoft has been fragmenting its products for years, offering dumbed-down versions for lower prices, yet still hard to reach for many consumers. If Microsoft insists on having three home versions, a couple enterprise versions, and other high-cost software, it will take a long time before they recover from their current freefall.

This may very well be a case of too little, too late. Microsoft took way to long to join the free app movement. Even now, this is just a free upgrade to a paid product. While this is certainly a smart move, Microsoft has a long way to go.

Google Acquires DocVerse

Sunday, December 20th, 2009

According to TechCrunch, Google just acquired a service called DocVerse. This is going to have a major impact on Google Docs, and it is going to be a huge boost for Google’s service.

When you go to the DocVerse website, you see in large letters, “Radically Improve the Way You Work on your Documents –
Painless, real time sharing and simultaneous group-editing editing of Microsoft PowerPoint, Excel and Word documents”. This sounds like an advertisement for Google Docs, except for the editing of Microsoft products part.

On its “About” page, DocVerse states. “DocVerse was founded in 2007 by Microsoft veterans Shan Sinha and Alex DeNeui, who finally gave up on the constant back-and-forth email attachments required to share and edit Word, PowerPoint and Excel documents.” This sounds like a problem common to all Microsoft users. DocVerse is a plugin that downloads into the right-hand sidebar in Microsoft Office. It saves the changes a user makes, whether or not the user is online, and by clicking save, it is equivalent to clicking “Share”. All changes from the users attached to the document will be shown a universal version, with all the changes shown to everyone. This is similar to using the Track Changes tool when one uses the traditional method of saving and emailing a collaborated document. The website says that the document will be available on each user’s computer, as well as a unique URL on the web.

DocVerse offers commenting tool, as well as change tracking.

Pricing on the service ranges from free to $99/month. This allows for a range of 1-25 users, and 10-1500 documents. This seems like a fairly reasonable pricing scheme. I wonder if Google will keep it going, or will bring it into its free Google Docs product line.

One thing that TechCrunch pointed out was that Microsoft is offering a similar service through its Office 2010 suite. I have checked out the early versions of Office 2010 and think that Google is smart to find a way to compete with Microsoft directly on Microsoft’s turf. While Google Docs is very easy to use and meets the needs of most people using word processors, Microsoft still has the edge when it comes to formatting in specific ways. If Google can attach itself directly to Microsoft’s Office Suite it will gain a substantial competitive advantage over Microsoft.

I am really looking forward to seeing what comes out of this acquisition. As more details about Gogole’s intentions with the service emerge, I will keep you updated. What do you think? Is Google making a good move here or not?