Microsoft is currently hard at work building the next iteration of the Office System. Labeled Office 2010 and formerly codenamed Office 14, the successor of Office 2007 will be designed to play nice not only with the next version of the Windows client, but also with its precursors, namely Windows Vista and Windows XP (Service Pack 3), reveals Reed Shaffner, Office TPM. At the same time, Office 2010 will come in both 32-bit and 64-bit flavors, set up to adapt to the respective architecture of the underlying Windows platform. One important aspect worth noting is that Microsoft has striven to fit Office 2010 on the same hardware as Office 2007, and in this respect save customers the cost of a computer upgrade.
Shaffner states: “You don't need to replace hardware that is capable of running 2007, it will support Office 2010. Like Windows 7 has demonstrated, we realize that taking advantage of the hardware you already own is just as important as supporting all the new technology coming out.”
At Microsoft Tech•Ed North America 2009, the software giant announced that the Technical Preview of Office 2010 was just under two months away. The Community technology Preview of the productivity suite is scheduled to ship to a limited number of testers on July 1, 2009. The testing program is invitation only, the company underlined.
“Technical preview is an engineering milestone leading towards RTM that Office 2010 and related products will reach in July 2009,” Shaffner adds. “Beginning at the technical preview milestone, we will conduct an invitation only technical preview program where participants will [be] able to experience Office Professional Plus 2010 and Visio 2010. Office 2010 Suite products are offered in both 32-bit and 64-bit versions so customers will not be required to upgrade 32-bit PC’s and Laptops to 64-bit hardware to run Office 2010 Suite Products. Certain hardware configurations and operating system versions customers currently have deployed may require an upgrade to run server and client products.”