Microsoft has unveiled their plans for an ad-supported version of its Office suite – Office Starter 2010. The product is to come pre-loaded on new PCs. It will have basic functionality – viewing, editing and creating of documents. MS claims that the Starter suite is designed for casual users, who will be fine with the reduced functionality and ad-supported software.
Microsoft plans to replace their MS Works version of Office with the Starter suite, which never expires. Consumers will have to live with the adverts, or pay to upgrade to a full version. The 60 day trial version of Office with full functionality will still be available.
A Product Key Card will be available via OEMs and retail stores, that allows the customer to upgrade to one of three full versions of the 2010 suite: Home & Student, Home & Business and Professional. Click-To-Run is a service that will enable users to download a trial version of the 2010 suite, as well as keep installed versions up to date. Product licenses can also be purchased through the service.
Office 2010 will be the first version of the suite to come in both 32-bit and 64-bit versions. The beta trials of Office 2010 are expected to start later this year. Microsoft is still working on their Office Web Apps, which are currently in ‘technical preview’ status.
Free Microsoft Office 2010 – comments and views