Microsoft Office 2013 unveiled
There will be physical copies of Office for those who want to install the suite in the traditional fashion, but Microsoft is really pushing three new Office 365 subscription levels – Home Premium for consumers, a small business variant, and a heavyweight one for enterprise clients.
Steve Ballmer presided over the unveiling of the suite at a press conference in San Francisco yesterday, noting that the product was designed to work smoothly across all Windows 8 devices, tablets and computers, via a mouse, stylus, or touch-based controls.
Ballmer commented: “We are taking bold steps at Microsoft. The new, modern Office will deliver unparalleled productivity and flexibility for both consumers and business customers. It is a cloud service and will fully light-up when paired with Windows 8.”
Microsoft asserted that the new Office will “respond to touch as naturally as it does to keyboard and mouse”. OneNote and Lync apps will be coming for Windows 8, and Windows RT devices will get Office Home and Student 2013 RT, as we already knew.
Office 2013 will save documents to the cloud, namely SkyDrive, and will sync not just your docs across all devices, but your various application settings and preferences. Subscribing users will obviously also be able to access Office applications on any net connected PC via the cloud.
Furthermore, subscribers will automatically get future upgrades and other perks such as extra SkyDrive storage space.
Social is the other avenue-du-jour which Microsoft is pushing with its new suite, and this is where the freshly purchased Yammer pops up, a private social network for businesses. Yammer will be integrated with SharePoint and Microsoft Dynamics.
And Office 2013 will also feature that major acquisition, Skype, with Skype contacts integrated into Lync. Office subscribers will also get 60 minutes of Skype world minutes each month.
Take a look at Microsoft’s customer preview site here.