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Microsoft Doles Out Office 2010 Public Beta

Microsoft Corp. has rolled out the public beta of its latest iteration of its Office 2010 application suite to millions of users, and has thrown some significant light on some of its noteworthy features that will be available with the final release, which is expected in the first half of the next year.

The software maker further doled out a new mechanism for testers to help them assess the beta version of the suite without impacting other software applications downloaded on the PC.

The new public beta will allow Microsoft to dispense the forthcoming version of the application suite to a wider range of testers.

Incidentally, the company has already published the technical preview of the software suite back in the month of July, and this massive public beta release would now let the testers check out the functionality in holistic terms.

The company further revealed that the newer Office suite version will be available in as many as five SKUs, namely Home and Business, Home and Student, Professional, Professional Plus and Standard.

Standard and Professional Plus are only meant for large organisations that have considerable licensing agreements. While Standard comprises of Word, Excel, Outlook and PowerPoint, Professional Plus in addition boasts of InfoPath, Publisher, Access and Communicator.

Along with these SKUs, Microsoft will also be rolling out a free version of Office 2010 suite, codenamed as “Office 2010 Starter Edition”, which will come pre-installed with new PCs.

Désiré has been musing and writing about technology during a career spanning four decades. He dabbled in website building and web hosting when DHTML and frames were en vogue and started writing about the impact of technology on society just before the start of the Y2K hysteria at the turn of the last millennium. Following an eight-year stint at where he discovered the joys of global tech-fests, Désiré now heads up TechRadar Pro. Previously he was a freelance technology journalist at Incisive Media, Breakthrough Publishing and Vnunet, and Business Magazine. He also launched and hosted the first Tech Radio Show on Radio Plus.