Microsoft readies Office overhaul

Microsoft this week plans to deliver the first test release of a new version of its Office software intended to rejuvenate sales and stave off competitors.
The new version of Microsoft’s cash cow–code-named Office 11–comes as sales of the desktop software have begun to plateau, said analysts. While Office still controls more than 90 percent of the desktop office market, customers say they see fewer new features that would compel them to upgrade to the latest versions. Although a new licensing plan will help keep customers in the Microsoft fold, any slump in sales could make a big impact on the software maker’s balance sheet. Office contributes nearly one-third of Microsoft’s overall revenue. (full story)
My spin:I applaud MS adding more features into Word – larger corporations will have a lot to gain from these features as their IT departments can create all sorts of bells and whistles to take advantage of these advanced features.
HOWEVER, for smaller businesses my HUNCH is that Word, will still be Word and the basic features will be used.
One quote in the article reads: Microsoft needs “to make Office less of a commodity,” said Gartner analyst Michael Silver. “People think they can come in with StarOffice and replace Office because all they’re getting is commodity word processing and a spreadsheet (through Office).”
Mr. Silver (and MS) need to understand that for MANY people they do not need advanced word processing capabilities.
HOWEVER, this begs another question where are the consultants and who SHOW smaller businesses how to take more advantage of the advanced features in upcoming versions of Word and other applications?
Avantgo users: To see links to the “full story” you must have live access to the Internet.