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Office 2007 Delayed Again 211

Tyler Too writes "Ars Technica reports that Microsoft Office 2007 has been delayed again, this time into early 2007. 'Based on internal testing and the beta 2 feedback around product performance, we are revising our development schedule to deliver the 2007 system release by the end of year 2006, with broad general availability in early 2007.' Tough bit of timing after this week's online preview of Office 2007."
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Office 2007 Delayed Again

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  • by MrSquirrel ( 976630 ) on Thursday June 29, 2006 @05:53PM (#15632024)
    Maybe it should be called Office 2008?
    • Actually they should change from the year labels, that is so Windows 95. This naming scheme is also leaving them open for these jokes when they push back shipping dates.
      Maybe they should just call it "Office V10", fewer crashes, with twice the big brother. Look here [] [] if you're unsure what I mean.
    • by SeaFox ( 739806 ) on Thursday June 29, 2006 @07:01PM (#15632507)
      Or Office Forever?

      That would save them from ever having to ship it.
  • Are we no longer going to be offered software that is "Product 20xx" before the year 20xx actually happens?!?!
  • Time to upgrade? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by AsmCoder8088 ( 745645 ) on Thursday June 29, 2006 @05:54PM (#15632048)
    I'm still using Office '97!
  • Lost sales (Score:5, Funny)

    by Anonymous Coward on Thursday June 29, 2006 @05:55PM (#15632056)
    Dang, they're going to miss the 2006 holiday season. Now what should I ask for for Christmas???
  • pass the shovel (Score:3, Insightful)

    by __aaitqo8496 ( 231556 ) on Thursday June 29, 2006 @05:55PM (#15632057) Journal
    microsoft is just digging thier hole deeper and deeper. of course, the incentive to upgrade to office is typically called into question with each iteration; but after the vista delay media frenzy, this is probably not exactly what microsoft wanted.
  • by Tackhead ( 54550 ) on Thursday June 29, 2006 @05:55PM (#15632058)
    The release date of this office suite is "When it's done".

    Anything else, and we mean anything else is someone's speculation. There is no date. We don't know any date. If you have a friend who claims they have "inside info", or there's some office suite news site, or some computer store at the mall who claims they know - they do not. They are making it up. There is no date. Period.

    And yes, we know the office suite has taken a long time. There's no possible joke you could make about the office suite's development time that we haven't already heard. :)

    Except the one about us having bought out 3D Realms [] to redo the UI in Aero so it'll look cool under Vista, which is why their other project's a bit late, too.

  • In other news... (Score:5, Informative)

    by gasmonso ( 929871 ) on Thursday June 29, 2006 @06:00PM (#15632097) Homepage

    Open Office 2.0.3 was released today for the low low cost of NOTHING :) []
    • by alfrin ( 858861 ) on Thursday June 29, 2006 @06:30PM (#15632310)
      You are obviously missing a very important detail:

      Open Office 2.0.3
      Office 2007

      Seriously people, thats centuries outdated.
    • Open Office 2.0.3 was released today for the low low cost of NOTHING :)

      And it sucks just as much as the previous version, so you won't miss anything by upgrading! ;P
    • Re:In other news... (Score:2, Interesting)

      by Anonymous Coward
      I just tried Open Office for the first time and I found it to run much much better than the Office POS I use at work. It seemed to be much more intuitive than Office. With Office I always have trouble doing anything more complicated than typing. The last time I was so satisfied with a word processor was with WordPerfect 5 (Dos) or WP 6 for winders.

      p.s. I am a programmer, so maybe they are building Office for normal people and I just don't know how to be normal.
    • I had the toughest time installing OOo 2.0.3 today. If you're upgrading from 2.0.x, be prepared for a rough ride if you deleted the "OpenOffice 2.0 Installation Files" folder since you last installed it. OOo's installer is horribly complex and broken... specifically the UNINSTALLER.

      Ok so I go to install 2.0.3. I launch the meta installer, which is coded in NSIS, which makes excellent uninstallers (but OOo doesn't use that functionality). So the meta installer installs the installer just fine, and stic

  • by Nybble's Byte ( 321886 ) on Thursday June 29, 2006 @06:01PM (#15632101) Journal
    Imagine that. But maybe MS needs to hedge their bets in the future, like Windows Whenever or Windows WTF.
  • So which part of this writeup did Ars Technica plagiarize from someone else []?
  • I tried it... (Score:4, Insightful)

    by citizenklaw ( 767566 ) on Thursday June 29, 2006 @06:10PM (#15632177)

    I tried the beta this week. I went in with an open mind, actually I was quite eager to try the 'ribbon' thingy. My hopes where dashed by the shameful M$ data mining effort before accesing the demo.

    I don't like it. Maybe is the learning curve, but doing basic stuff in Word (changing font size, for instance) was troublesome. The terminal environment didn't work either. And Outlook? Piece of crap. I for one will stay on my current version of OpenOffice, thank you.

    • Re:I tried it... (Score:5, Insightful)

      by SA3Steve ( 323565 ) on Thursday June 29, 2006 @06:16PM (#15632223)
      The 'data mining' effort? Do you mean where they are trying to get feedback on the program? It is a BETA release...where I would think the main idea is to get feedback.

      What was troublesome about the font changing mechanism? What didn't work about the terminal environment? What could be done to improve Outlook? Feedback is always welcome I would assume, but there isn't much that Microsoft can do without feedback explaining what you felt was wrong and how you feel it could be made better.
    • ...was this lousy video demo.

      I even went through all the info-gathering rubbish first, and downloaded their ActiveX control. And then when I actually tried to start the interactive "test drive" thing, I got an error message popping up (apparently within their application) saying it had gone wrong, and a blank screen. I hope that's not the demo of what Office 2007 is actually going to do! :-/

      I did watch the streaming video demo of the new UI though, and I have to say that it pretty much plays out my wors

    • I've also tried the beta, and I too went into it with an open mind. I dislike MS as much as the next guy, but they do some good stuff, sometimes, and at the very least, I believe in 'know thy enemy.' But ribbons suck. I hope they're going to spend six months tearing them out and putting menus back in.

      If anyone wants specifics, reply, and I'll post details when I'm back home with my test box. The link in my .sig refers to another issue. :-)
      • I like the ribbons, but I guess it's more a personal preference. I do wish they would make the apps so that you could switch between the ribbons and a more "classic" style. I can see some people being confused by the new interface.
  • I wonder... (Score:4, Interesting)

    by rilister ( 316428 ) on Thursday June 29, 2006 @06:12PM (#15632193)
    ... if this could be related to re-thinking that radical user-interface change that they've attached to Word. (I use a CAD program that adopted this kind of thing a few releases back and I still detest this, just like anyone with tendonitis would detest pointless extra mouse clicks.)

    Beta preview is right the time that all their big corporate accounts would feedback "for the love of God, we're not retraining every person in the darn organization just to use Word. Now CHANGE IT BACK!"
    • I've been running the beta side-by-side with Office 2003 since it was released and I have to say that, while the first time I look for something is a little hard, I am really liking the new user interface. it's definitely a whole lot more intuitive that the older one and things... make sense. Now, I am an IT guy and I write about this stuff, so I'm probably more open minded when it comes to this stuff than some end users. Office 2007 will require some training, but things are easy to find.
    • Well they had to change SOMETHING for calling it a new version. Better changing the interface than ruining a finished product.
  • Don't you hate it when companies ship product X with "year" as the version-number or title actually in "year - 1"?
    Just like you can't really buy sandals in summer because the silly shoe-shops have already stocked the autumn-ware?

    MSFT is responding to consumers and posponing the release of Office2007 until it matches the year it is shipped in.
    As Windows Vista bears no release-date name, its release-date is bit arbitrary... ;-)
  • Be Patient (Score:2, Insightful)

    by tkarr ( 459657 )
    You'll notice that they CARE about the people who use their product. People might give Office crap about how they keep pushing products back, but they only do it so you get the best product. Do you complain when Blizzard does it?
    You do?
    Well, you shouldn't :-P. It's worth it to wait.
    • Re:Be Patient (Score:4, Insightful)

      by Volante3192 ( 953645 ) on Thursday June 29, 2006 @06:42PM (#15632383)
      Only company I don't complain about pushing back release dates is Valve. (Might do the same for Blizzard, but newest I have of theirs is WC3:FT, and I haven't beaten it yet)

      They've shown they can justify a delay because the product is GOOD.

      Microsoft has not given me the level of confidence Valve has.
      • Half-Life 2 was terrible. That extra year and they still had really bad bugs in their code. A fair amount of people could not progress because of them, myself included. The performance of HL2 was also quite terrible. A game that looks marginally better than UT2004 but runs terribly worse. Valve has shown me they only delay products because they don't actually finish them.
  • by akac ( 571059 ) on Thursday June 29, 2006 @06:19PM (#15632247) Homepage

    I very much enjoy using the ribbon. I think its a huge improvement in usability. If I wasn't using it in Parallels mostly and there was a Mac version, I'd use it definitely. I always liked Entourage, but I won't use it due to Rosetta (I only use PPC apps when I have no choice - with email I have a choice).

    So while I love Outlook 2007 and Word 2007, I don't enjoy the speed. Its definitely slower. So I hope they work on that more.
  • Oops (Score:5, Funny)

    by Colin Smith ( 2679 ) on Thursday June 29, 2006 @06:32PM (#15632329)
    They discovered Open Office could still read the new file format. Decided to tweak it that little bit further.

    • OOo can read .docx?

      Care to post a link to instructions? 'cause OOo 2 just gave me a blank page when I tried to open a file with it.
  • Licensing 6.0 (Score:5, Insightful)

    by nighty5 ( 615965 ) on Thursday June 29, 2006 @06:50PM (#15632442)
    Microsoft is laughing all the way to the bank.

    Not only have they locked in the vast majority of enterprise customers, they now have no pressure to deliver a product when they said they would.

    This is classic Microsoft and their best.
    • Every CIO is about to get reamed by MS but they won't do anything about it. Oddly enough none of their workers will give a damn anyway. They don't need an upgrade, their current version works just fine and does everything they want it to do. The only purpose of an office upgrade is to transfer shareholders money to MS. I am sure the CIO will get a nice present from MS after the contract is signed.
  • I mean, really! 99% of the users wouldn't use anything that isn't in Office 2000. The only reason would be for file formats (more MS proprietary, as well and XML and OD), but still 99% of the users still wouldn't ever NEED to use them. I think a new Office version is a dead horse. Somebody shoot Steve B. and Bill G.!
    • mean, really! 99% of the users wouldn't use anything that isn't in Office 2000

      Things that most users will use once they start using Word 2007:

      * the new, smaller XML file format.
      * Saving as XPS or PDF.
      * Blogging.

      For the first time in awhile, there's an office upgrade that's really worth getting.
      • Anyone that wants PDF or Blogging from Word probably has that without 2007.
        • Anyone that wants PDF or Blogging from Word probably has that without 2007.

          No, not really.

          PDF with Word you can get by either going through the hassle of installing a second printer subsystem, the frustration of getting a sub-par system for a modest fee, or the expense of buying a software package whose cost can equal that of Word.

          Blogging -- there is no in-Word blogging for any system prior than 2007. Period. At best, you can get an ugly cut-and-paste that will either get you no benefit or just give you bloat.

          And if you think that only tech-savy users want PDFs or Blogging, you've spent too much time navel gazing.
          • Most blogs accept articles via email, you can email from word. What's the problem? If PDF was a compelling feature people would have switched to open office by now. The new format?? Who the hell cares about that. I have never ever heard anybody say "I can't wait to get the new office so I can save in a different format". Never, not even once. The fact that you are hanging out with people who are looking forward to that feature tells me that you are the one spending too much time navel gazing.
            • Most blogs accept articles via email, you can email from word

              I can't, and neither can Grandma, after she heard that Outlook has viruses.

              If PDF was a compelling feature people would have switched to open office by now.

              If OOo was 100% feature-complete with Word, I would have. But it's not, and it's not in ways that make it not worth the effort for me (or virtually anyone else I know) to use it.

              The new format?? Who the hell cares about that.

              Everyone who's ever complained about Office's proprietary file type,
      • XML format: If I want a good XML file format, I'd sooner trust OpenOffice

        XPS: why would I want that?

        PDF: you can get decent PDF creation with free software. There are a bunch of different options. I like CutePDF []

        Blogging: Who in their right mind would pay hundreds of dollars for a Microsoft Word upgrade, just so they can use Word to post to their blog? There are loads of ways to post to your weblog, free options, and MS Word seems like it's more than overkill. In fact, for what most people use Word fo

        • XML format: If I want a good XML file format, I'd sooner trust OpenOffice

          Actually, for real XML I trust neither. But since it's an XML based format for either, I can "trust" that even if the software spontaneously dies everywhere tomorrow, I can get my thesis/paper/novel into something i can keep working on. (I've noted the non-obvious benefits elsewhere.)

          XPS: why would I want that?

          Because it's not PDF, but does the same task. And unlike the bastardized MDI format from XP-2003, XPS is actually going to h
      • It's 2006. I just bought two 120 GB hard drives for $49.99 each--that's the out-the-door price, no rebates; and not crap, these are 5-year-warranted Seagates. Who worries about the file size of an office document? I know, I know, not everyone has huge hard drives and broadband, but do you really think people are going to shell out big bucks so a 40k Word document turns out to be 31k because it's OMGXML? It's 2006, the ony files people want to make smaller are movies.

        XPS will not matter until everyone has th
  • Oh no's! (Score:4, Funny)

    by jrmiller84 ( 927224 ) on Thursday June 29, 2006 @07:35PM (#15632724) Homepage
    I don't know if I can wait that long! My spreadsheets and word documents just aren't living up to their full potentiall!

  • Sounds like there's some tight coupling with the next version of the rewritten-from-the-ground-up operating system having the best security of any OS on the market. Maybe they should stop charging extra for this and ship it with the computer and tie the pricing to the hardware so that you can't update the computer without asking permission.

    or are they just having a difficult time figuring out how to read the ODF specs?

    is there a train wreck coming or what.

  • Geeze (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Thursday June 29, 2006 @08:34PM (#15633059)
    If you don't have anything original to say, then don't say anything at all.

    I was quite impressed with the Office 2007 beta and was surpised to learn that performance was an issue. One of the features I really like is the ability to do real-time previews of different style sets, which performed quickly. The UI is also quite streamlined and its obvious Microsoft is trying something new with UI design that no other OS can attest to.

    I just am amazed that when there is an article that talks about how slow Microsoft's product development is taking, people complain about how long it is taking. But when Microsoft was turning out Office and OS updates with only a year or two between them, people were complaining about how fast an unecesary it was for MS to come out with something new so quickly.

    The bottom line is, people don't got anything new, or original to say about Microsoft, and it gets pretty tired. I don't know if people think they are being witty or smart when they post another "insert common misperception here" comment.

    The saddest part is, how may people are using MS products every day. I mean 90% of the desktop market uses Windows, so you kind of have to wonder if Slashdot is only read and commented on by 10% of the computer market.
    • Re:Geeze (Score:2, Insightful)

      by Fullhazard ( 985772 )
      People don't need to think up new bad things to say about windows/office. All the complaints are as valid today as they were in 95.
      What microsoft needs to do is FIX the problems that everyone complains about, and THEN they will become pointless to say
      Example: Politicians are corrupt. Millions of people every day claim politicians are corrupt, and yet, in many cases, it's true, so the complaint is bloody well valid!

      As for the 90%/10% jab, you realize this is /. right? News for Nerds, home of the rampagin
    • Re:Geeze (Score:4, Funny)

      by killjoe ( 766577 ) on Thursday June 29, 2006 @11:20PM (#15633812)
      I wish people would not make fun of my favorite corporation. It's just not fair that ordinary people should critize or mock my favorite corporation. I mean sure they have a billion dollar marketing budget and all but how are they supposed to stand up to the abuse ordinary people on slashdot heap on them.

      Thank god MS has people like you to stand up for them. What would they ever do without you defending them against the unwashed masses!.

      BTW: My favorite corporation is maytag. I hang out at washing machine forums and defend maytag anytime anybody critizes them, says their products are not that good, or mocks them.

      I think people who critize corporations are so sad. They probably still live in their mothers basement or something. If they were adults they too would adopt a corporation and defend them valiently on public forums. Too bad there are not more people like you and me.
  • by pcause ( 209643 ) on Friday June 30, 2006 @08:24AM (#15635369)
    I have been using the beta and after even a short time I am not surprised by the delay. Lots of places where performance needs work with Outlook being the biggest.

    The focus of this release seemed to be on eye candy (the ribbon) and not on performance and ease of use. Some will say that the ribbon adds to ease of use and maybe it does. But I also find it can be cumbersome some times. If you are an occassional user of an app, it might help you use the apps and discover commands. There was a lot in these apps that epople didn't use because they couldn't find the command or figure out how to use the commands. Maybe the ribbon helps, hard to tell yet.

    Using Outlook 2007 is tough because the perfoamnce is terrible. That is saying a lot given the Outlook has always been slow. I know this is a beta, but one expects a beta 2, released just 3-4 months before the expected commercial release to be pretty close to final. There are some nice changes, but too little improvement and lacking needed extra functionality.

    Word seems OK, but on the ribbon there is space left over and they make you click the "editting" icon to get to find or replace, which are common operations. Strange choice especially since they give Find a spot on the bar in Powerpoint.

    Desktop Search 3, which is supposed to be an integrated element is incomplete and still buggy (yes, beta, but....).

    Powerpoint and Excel seem about the same.

    Lots of work in integrating with Sharepoint.
  • by Churla ( 936633 ) on Friday June 30, 2006 @08:40AM (#15635445)
    That MS realizes there isn't any new "killer app" value in the office suite? Due to that they have no pressing need to rush a new version out the door until it's what they want, and until it meets some level of quality they're shooting for. When "We're putting in ribbons!" is the huge leap forward.. you're not leaping very far.

    If that's the case maybe this is a good thing in that they're trying to take their time. We all know it's not financially driven because shareholders want to see big profits before the end of this year to pick up the sagging stock price. As it is they're positioning for 2007 to be a huge year (new windows and new office in same year), which would make current shareholders somewhat unhappy. Because NOBODY buys a stock with the long term in view anymore... do they?

Beware of Programmers who carry screwdrivers. -- Leonard Brandwein