Microsoft's next stab at a productivity suite has hit the release candidate stage. According to a few sources a select group of beta testers have been given access to the first of the release candidates for the upcoming Office 2010 suite.
MS originally released Office 2010 to the world in the form of a technical preview. They also released the Beta one version of the software last year in November alongside the release of Windows 7. Since then it has been downloaded more than 2 million times. This number of downloads is a good indication that an update to office will be welcomed in the market.
Office 2010 brings updates to all of the core engines along with an improved "ribbon" interface. MS has put some thought into the updates and also the flow of each of the applications. Microsoft is retaining the XML format for documents (although you can always change the default to an older non-XML format.). If MS keeps to its schedule we could see Office 2010 hit the retail stores around October of this year
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