IBM to close down Lotus Symphony in favour of Apache OpenOffice

According to reports, IBM's Lotus Symphony office suite's latest and most likely final version was dished out earlier last week, with the Lotus Symphony office suite aimed specifically at users looking for a free alternative to Microsoft Office.

The latest version of Lotus Symphony 3.0.1 is based on the open source OpenOffice.org suite, adding various enhancements such as support for one million spreadsheet rows, a new design for the home page and also, bubble charts.

Yet for the time being, the company will be focusing on Apache OpenOffice, as confirmed via a blog post by Ed Brill, Director of Messaging and Collaboration for IBM Lotus software.

"This will likely be the last release of IBM's own fork of the OpenOffice codebase," he posted, adding that "our energy from here is going into the Apache OpenOffice project."

IBM's Lotus Symphony was released in the year 2007 and last July, the company donated the Symphony code to the Apache Software Foundation. Just recently, the Foundation also received Oracle's OpenOffice.org.

Brill also disclosed that the company has plans to distribute an "IBM edition" of Apache OpenOffice project very soon.