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May 13, 2010

Microsoft Office 2010 has a cloudy lining

by Darren Allan

Yesterday witnessed the launch of Microsoft Office 2010 for businesses (home users will have to wait until next month before it hits the shops).

And there’s a big change here, namely that Microsoft is incorporating the cloud with the arrival of Office 2010.

The suite will now come alongside Office Web Apps, a free online service which is basically built along the same lines as Google Docs.

Word, Excel and Powerpoint will all have these online versions, so you can store documents and so forth remotely, and work on them anywhere, providing you have a net connection.

The online applications won’t be nearly as well featured as the full versions the Office suite sports, of course.

It’s a big shift for Microsoft, as the company has eschewed cloud computing with its Windows software thus far, for fears of undermining the big juicy profits coined in on the back of its weighty applications.

It seems that this is an acknowledgement by MS that working in the cloud is the likely future of productivity applications, and they best start getting on board before Google has everything sown up.

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