Microsoft announces home user Office 2010

Microsoft today announced the release date of its Office 2010 suite to consumers.

The software giant made its new suite available to businesses yesterday. Today, it was consumers' turn to learn when they’d get their hands on the new productivity software.

Student, Home and Professional versions of the suite, available for pre-order here, will be released on 15 June – along with the launch of the 'free' version of the suite, Office Live.

Office Live will make the familiar office tools available through web browsers in an online version that Microsoft hopes will go head-to-head with Google Docs.

Facebook users can get a peek at the online service with, Microsoft’s tie-in with the social network.

The retail versions of Office 2010 are as follows:

Office 2010 Student – available to those in full-time education - includes Word, Excel, PowerPoint and OneNote for £109.99.

Home adds Outlook to these core apps for a much heftier £239.99.

Professional has all the features of Home, with the addition of Publisher and database program Access for a whopping £429.99.

Releasing the software, Microsoft took the controversial step of ditching upgrade pricing for its 2010 suite, but canny customers can get a free upgrade to the new suite by buying and activating a copy of Office 2007 before 30 September. The offer is limited to 25 copies per customer.