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Microsoft Office 360 Finally Hits RTM Milestone

By - Source: Offoce Blog | B 11 comments

Microsoft has signed off on the Office RTM build, meaning the suite is on track for a 1Q13 launch.

The Microsoft Office blog reports that Office 365 has reached an important milestone, as the engineering team signed off on the Release To Manufacturing (RTM) build on Thursday. The coding and testing of the suite is now complete, and the team will now focus on releasing the new Office via multiple distribution channels to consumers and businesses.

"This is the most ambitious release of Office we've ever done," admitted Kirk Koenigsbauer, Corporate Vice President of Microsoft's Office Division. "It spans the full family of Office applications, servers and cloud services. The new Office has a fresh, touch friendly design that works beautifully on Windows 8 and unlocks modern scenarios in social, reading, note-taking, meetings and communications. We are proud to achieve this milestone and are eager to deliver this exciting release to our customers."

The general availability of Office 365 is planned for the first quarter of 2013. However, customers purchasing Office 2010 from local retailers or resellers can get the new version for free upon availability, starting October 19. As previously stated, a preview version will be supplied on Windows RT devices starting October 26.

"We will begin rolling out new capabilities to Office 365 Enterprise customers in our next service update, starting in November through general availability," Koenigsbauer said. "Volume Licensing customers with Software Assurance will be able to download the Office 2013 applications as well as other Office products including SharePoint 2013, Lync 2013 and Exchange 2013 through the Volume Licensing Service Center by mid-November. These products will be available on the Volume Licensing price list on December 1."

IT professionals and developers will be able to download the final version of Office 365 via their TechNet or MSDN subscriptions by mid-November, he added.

Office customers eager to check out the new version can download and install the Customer Preview versions here including the Home Premium Preview, the Small Business Premium Preview, and the ProPlus Preview. Here are a few details on each:

Office 365 Home Premium Preview
Best for families and includes Word, PowerPoint, Excel, Outlook, OneNote, Access, and Publisher.

Office 365 Small Business Premium Preview
Best for businesses with up to 10 employees (no IT expertise required) and includes Word, PowerPoint, Excel, Outlook, OneNote, Access, Publisher, and Lync. Also provides professional email, multi-party HD video conferencing, a public website, and shared documents.

Office 365 ProPlus Preview
Best for large organizations and includes Word, PowerPoint, Excel, Outlook, OneNote, Access, Publisher, and Lync. Also provides enterprise-grade security, side-by-side support for previous versions of Office, and IT controls that let you manage Office on your terms and with your tools and processes.


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  • 9 Hide
    bourgeoisdude , October 12, 2012 7:29 PM
    Office for the 360? No? Oh you meant Office 365?
  • 3 Hide
    Johmama , October 12, 2012 9:15 PM
    Office 360. I was just imagining using the on-screen keyboard the 360 uses and a controller to type a document and I cringed.
  • 2 Hide
    JOSHSKORN , October 12, 2012 9:41 PM
    Is it called Office 360 or Office 365??
  • Display all 11 comments.
  • 3 Hide
    falchard , October 12, 2012 9:43 PM
    Ahh I am going to have to pay for Office soon.
  • 0 Hide
    Anonymous , October 12, 2012 10:57 PM
    RTM announcement was around Office 2013. Office 365 is the online cloud based office (which powers
  • 1 Hide
    SteelCity1981 , October 13, 2012 12:50 AM
    i haven't used office for years since Open Office is free.
  • 0 Hide
    tobalaz , October 13, 2012 3:52 AM
    I thought RTM was return to manufacturer, it is MS we're talking about here.
    Anyone remember the Zune?
  • 1 Hide
    RealJames , October 13, 2012 5:03 AM
    does Toms have an editor? 360? Really??
  • 0 Hide
    john_4 , October 13, 2012 12:32 PM
    Libre Office/Open Office > MS Office
  • 0 Hide
    hixbot , October 15, 2012 6:17 PM
    2 days later and they still didn't fix the title. Do Toms even care?
  • 0 Hide
    PhoneyVirus , October 15, 2012 7:41 PM
    I really don't care what Tom calls it or Microsoft I'll be sticking with WordPerfect Office X6 as I did for Years and with WordPerfect Office X6 you can Convert to WordDocs so why even think about the Cloud or there 2013 version.