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Microsoft lays out Office 365 plans

11th Nov 2010
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Microsoft’s TechEd Europe conference this week gave the company a chance to pave the way for a number of new technologies, including enhancements to its Office productivity suite.

The development that is arousing the most interest is Office 365, a web-based version of its flagship Office application suite. Office 365 is currently being beta tested in the US and should be ready for commercial release during 2011. We are still awaiting guidance from Microsoft on the timetable for availability in Europe.

The shape Office 365 will take will follow the path already established by what is now called SkyDrive (formerly Office Web apps), a Cloud-based Office document creation and storage area. Office 365 will add Microsoft Exchange and SharePoint facilities to the online mix, allowing users to manage email distribution, collaborative diaries and document publishing.

For US small business customers, the service will cost from $6/user/month for up to 25 users.

David H Ringstrom commented on our US sister site,, “Many businesses aren’t yet comfortable with having mission-critical applications and data residing in the Cloud, but this combination of low cost and high flexibility might cause skeptics to pause and consider the possibilities.”

In other developments, Microsoft has also released Office for Mac 2011. Like the PC version of 2010, the new Mac release extends the interface Ribbon to all of the Office programs. The Mac suite also includes a Document Connection tool to manage files in the SkyDrive Cloud environment.


Replies (2)

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By Cantona1
12th Nov 2010 16:38


According to MS's site, office-365 offers a limied editing tools, so it is not the same as a desktop application. Until, it produces the same features as a desktop, this cloud will remain as cloud.

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By carnmores
13th Nov 2010 10:16

yes that is true but it is a great help

on the move I need to accesss ceratin files and i use the web aps for that without having to have the underlying software on a hand held device - get a windows live account and try it out - for some reason i have a .com and a and use the .com for web aps

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