Microsoft Office Comes to the Browser

October 28th, 2008 at 12:00 am

microsoft office live browser-based office

It’s been a while since Microsoft Office made any announcements.  Last we heard was when Micorosft was planning to launch a free version of their office suite online which turned out to be an under powered and practically useless version of their popular software MS Office Suite.

However, today at the PDC2008 in Los Angeles Microsoft is announcing again that they ‘re entering the online office suite space.  This time around they’ll be offering lightweight yet (mostly) complete versions of their Office products.  This means that with the online MS Office suite, users can view and edit Word, Powerpoint, and Excel documents.

The introduction of this service is aligned with Microsoft’s big news that they’ll be joining in the cloud computing and services market.  Now with Windows Azure, Microsoft can host the online office suite just like Google is using the AppEngine to run their Docs.

In an interview with Chris Capossela, SVP Microsoft Business Division, he says, "We are on a path to deliver all our technology as "software plus services," and today is an important milestone in this journey. For more than 10 years, millions of workers have benefited from Microsoft cloud-based services, including Hosted Exchange, Outlook Web Access and Live Meeting.

Earlier this year, we announced Microsoft Online, which businesses such as Coca-Cola Enterprises, Blockbuster, and Energizer are using to access Exchange and SharePoint over the Web. Last month, more than 1 million people turned to Office Live Workspace for sharing and collaborating over the Internet. 

Today in Los Angeles, we raised the stakes with Office Web applications. With this development, people can benefit from Office as a service on their browser, as a downloadable application on their phone, and as software on their PCs. This is the kind of flexibility that our software plus services approach makes possible, and is helping us deliver the kind of innovation that businesses and consumers expect from Microsoft."