Office 14 – Finally! Anytime Upgrade, Portable Office?

Sorry, I haven’t started off the new year as quick as possible with blog post, but you probably have a good idea of why I am busy – and yes, its Windows 7 related. But I also have some Windows Live content I want to finish up. So stay tuned.

This blog post in particular is about one of Microsoft’s other important platforms, Microsoft Office. With the success of Office 2007 and great reception that the Office Fluent (Ribbon) has gotten since its release, folks have been wondering, what’s next?

Well, finally, someone has satisfied our curiosity, it seems there will be Office Fluent across the board, and more improvements to the user interfaces. There is one particular screenshot that caught my eye amongst the Office 14 modules. The About Page features some cross pollination from Windows along with new mobility improvements. Lets check it out:

Office 14 new ways of upgrading and carrying Microsoft Office with you?

Office Anytime Upgrade:

With the release of Windows Vista, Microsoft offered an easy way for users to upgrade to higher or more feature rich SKU’s (editions) of Windows. For instance, licensed users of Windows Vista Home Basic can do an upgrade to Windows Vista Home Premium or Ultimate by using their existing Windows DVD and gain access to  new features such as MCE, Domain Join, BitLocker, (depending on the SKU), by simply purchasing a key online. Office 14 looks like it will be taking a page out of this book.

Create Mobile Office Device

Interesting, could Microsoft be making Office a portable piece of software? Sounds like it! Taking into account, the size of the Office disk around 500 MBs that’s miniscule for any thumb drive these days. What this probably guarantees is that any computer that can run Office 14 you can simply plug in your thumb drive and have access to the latest version with all the features you enjoy using in the suite. There is also the concern for rampant piracy. I assume, it will lock down Office 14 installed locally on your system when you take it with you. Personally, when I am on the go with documents I might want to access, its most likely for light editing, so the Office 14 web applications might be just enough for that. But its good to see Microsoft possibly making the suite more flexible with how you can use it.

Office 14 based on these screenshots still look like a work in progress, and the About Page which displays unrelated pictorial representations proves that there is still some polishing to go before you can buy this at the store or online. Its good to see programs in the suite getting the full treatment such as Publisher 14 and programs like Visio also adopting Office Fluent. I am definitely looking forward to run this update on Windows 7!


Filed under Office Productivity

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