Office 2008 Coming January 2008


We announced today that Office 2008 for Mac will be released to manufacturing (“RTM”) this December, which will allow for retail availability in the US in mid-January (planning for Macworld), and allow us to deliver Office 2008 to our volume license customers and global customers in the first quarter of 2008.


We had hoped to deliver the product in the second half of 2007 and as you know might imagine, this was a tough slip for us. Moving RTM to December means you, our customers, won’t have our product this year, and I am very clear a lot of folks are eagerly awaiting Office 2008. Slipping delays when our team can move on to our next release of Office for Mac – we’re working to get releases out on a more frequent basis, delivering more good stuff to Microsoft Mac customers more often.


As tough as it is, I firmly believe that this slip is the right call for MacBU. Delivering Office at the right quality level is super important to the entire team and to Microsoft’s long standing commitment to the Mac platform, and it was clear from our June and July quality checkpoints that no matter how hard we tried, we couldn’t release our product in time for the Christmas season with the kind of quality we wanted.

We’re in an “all hands on deck” mode right now to ensure Office 2008 gets finished on time, and so you will not see final versions of our RDC client or file format converters until sometime after we ship Office.


Starting in September, we are planning a series of “sneak peeks” to show you more of the features and functionality of this release. I’m very pleased that we can soon start sharing more of what the team has been up to – stay tuned.

Comments (198)

  1. JM says:

    A full year after the Office release…and no converters until afterwards?

    Wow….wouldn’t want to trade places with anyone there!

  2. V says:

    Kind of a let down, I think Office 2004 is sometimes unbearably slow and seeing this is a major disappointment. Oh well, only a few months to go.

  3. Craig says:

    Hey, shipping products late its what Microsoft is all about.  Plus there was the added burden of ensuring VBA support, compounded with new formats for Office 2007 that couldn’t have been available to another Microsoft division until the retail version shipped and they bought it on the shelf.  Adobe can bring its full CS3 line to a universal binary, but a word processor, spreadsheet, and presentation application is definitely more complicated. C’mon guys.

  4. Erin ACB says:

    Oh well, as disappointing as it is that the release date has been pushed back, the important thing is to have a quality product with really up-to-date functionality.  Speaking of that, will there be any integration between Office:mac 2008 and PC-only products such as Sharepoint?

  5. MacManX says:

    Does this mean that the next release of Microsoft Messenger for Mac also will be delayed? It’s now been six months since the 6.0.2 release and many of us are eagerly awaiting new features like video support and shared folders.

  6. sladuuch says:

    Shigeru Miyamoto (creator of Mario and Zelda) once said, "A delayed game is eventually good; a bad game is bad forever."

  7. David Garrett says:

    Buh-bye

  8. John Whalen says:

    Please take the time to get it right the first time.  Interested in a beta tester? johnwhalen at yahoo.com.  MS Office user since Mac SE.  Still miss Word 5.1, but like the new ribbon on Windows side.

  9. hadley stern says:

    As long as the new Office has a real MAPI client that interacts with an exchange server to the same level that the Windows client I am happy.

    Please, please, please make this priority number 1. I don’t care about the Project Center, I don’t care about to-do lists, I just want to be able to read and respond to my email, create and respond to invites, etc. like a normal Windows users….but on my Mac!

  10. P says:

    That was predictable.  Guess the MacBU isn’t that much different than the rest of Microsoft, after all.

    Are we going to get a beta soon?

    Are we going to get details on what’s actually in Entourage soon?  Will Entourage be a full-fledged Exchange client?  Can I finally ditch Windows from my Mac?

  11. macuser says:

    I thought that this was pretty obvious based on the state of the file converters. If there are still bugs in the converters, then obviously, Office isn’t coming along too well.

  12. macuser says:

    Can you please build the converters into the Office 2004 suite?

  13. LawMan says:

    Well, I am a bit disappointed, but I’d rather you put out a top-notch product, so good for you for knowing that you need to delay it a bit.

    Are you going to release any beta type software?

    Thanks.

  14. brian d says:

    Another great reason to switch to google apps…this may do it for my organization.

  15. aquraishi says:

    This is good news – at least that we have a release date although I am disappointed by the lack of news up to now.

    What are you going to do for new Mac buyers who have not purchased office 2004, instead preferring the OpenOffice Mac port until Office 2008 releases? If I buy Office 2004 now, which it looks like I need to, will you give me a free upgrade to 2008 in January?

    Perhaps I should just wait until SUN’s contribution to the Mac-port starts paying off and we get a native, OOo supported version (http://porting.openoffice.org/mac/) – probably in the same timeframe…

  16. Tony says:

    Office is MSFT’s 2nd largest cash cow, outside of their Windows franchise.  While you’re busy creating free file converters and remote access tools, your paying customers are clamoring for Office.  Your priorities are wrong.

    I called it this week in my other comments on this site: Microsoft is clearly worried about Apple. In comes Craig to fix the ship, and in his first 90 days he realizes the BU’s principal product, supposedly only months from completion, has "quality" issues and, more likely than not, huge gaps in functionality.  I’d be willing to place an enormous bet that there were going to be huge compatibility gaps between Windows and Mac platforms, and Craig saw the disaster coming – and that’s at the center of this colossal delay.

    The MacBU should be absolutely ashamed.  Yes, you’ve worked hard, but not smart.  So, while I have these silly free file converters and remote access tools, I’m still using a 4 year old toolset and my Windows buddies are reveling in Office 2007.  I have $300 burning a hole in my pocket to buy your software, and you can’t create a product to earn it.

    More to the point, rumor has it that Apple is going to announce their Work ’08 product next week.  Rather than dealing a death blow to Apple’s product and announcing that Office 2008 has gone gold the week before Apple’s press conference (which Apple user would buy Work if they can buy Office?), Microsoft announces more delay.  Worse yet, Microsoft doesn’t have the savvy to announce delay like Apple did with Leopard (with feature lists and demos), Microsoft just announces delay.  (Oh, they also announced a free set of tools and the 20th anniversary of PowerPoint, where the lead seemed to be pleased with some "Apple only" features.  Read: compatibility issues.)  Meanwhile, Apple will sell oodles of software products this summer/fall/winter instead of watching them collect dust.

    Craig – The one thing that should be absolutely crystal clear to you is Office has to be 100% interoperable.  Anything less is a failure in understanding your customers.  You’ve supposedly "righted" the ship with this delay, now use this time to bridge your products’ gaps with customer expectations.  It began a year ago when MacBU announced that it wouldn’t support VBA (I cannot tell you how many VBA-based plugins people use w/ Excel).  Who knows what’s happened since.  No one is proud enough of the product to announce details yet…

  17. Greg says:

    Bummer…but I’m looking forward to the sneak-peeks.

    As an Exchange and SharePoint admin for Windows and Mac clients, I’m especially interested in what MacBU can pull off in feature parity with Outlook 2007.

  18. Peter says:

    Craig,

    that’s good to hear we can get a sneak peek soon.  However, ( and i’m sure you are sick of hearing this) I have to say that without VBA it is likely to be very difficult for many users to upgrade to it.

    One idea might be to supply a copy of 2004 on the 2008 disks for those who still need VBA.

    Can you say a bit more about 2008 – possibly let us see a video or screenshots?

    regards,

    Peter

  19. Wesley says:

    >…so you will not see final versions of our RDC client or file format converters until sometime after we ship Office.

    I can’t stress enough how utterly unacceptable this is. We saw Office 2007’s new file formats released in January of this year. And we won’t have a reliable converter for the Mac platform until over a year later? That a fully functional read/write version of the converter was not released at the same time as Office 2007 was infuriating. This latest slip only adds to the impression that Microsoft is either deliberately slighting Mac users, or hopelessly incompetent.

    As a person who supports around 250 Mac users in a predominantly Windows environment, I can only express rage, frustration and unbridled scorn for the Mac business unit today. Nor is it merely the Mac users that are effected. Our PC users are currently confused and in many cases downgrading to Office 2003 to retain the seamless integration with their Mac-using colleagues that they have come to expect.

  20. Gideon says:

    You know…   I’ve been eagerly awaiting the new Office.  I was using Office 2007 before I switched to Mac, and found it to be a wonderful experience…  once I got to Mac I found out what a giant pain in the butt using Office 2004 was.  At least, on an Intel Mac.

    This is what I don’t get…  every other major developer for Mac managed to create Universal binaries, therefore making the product work much better on intel macs – except you guys.  And what we’ve been left with is Office 2004 being slow, crashing a lot, and just generally unpleasant to use.

    I don’t LIKE the alternatives on Mac.  But…  The new semester is starting, and I’m not going to put my eggs in that basket again.  I was really looking forward to Office 2008, and I understand sofftware often takes longer to do…. but what you’ve left us with really destroys any sense of brand loyalty I had.

  21. SlackGator says:

    Ridiculous and par for the course.

  22. george says:

    As a 20 year Mac manager overseeing 300 corporate users, I’m so not surprised.

    I went to Microsoft’s Office for Mac roadshow a couple of months ago and I could see at that time they were not all together like Office was good to go.

    Typical performance from Microsoft.

  23. Jay says:

    Apple’s upcoming iWork ’08 is starting to look like a viable alternative.  I wonder if they will have working converters for Office 2007 out of the box?

  24. No worry, just make the Exchange support really good in Entourage 2008 and I’ll let this one slip by. If you are interested in a BETA tester I would be glad to lend a hand also. 😉

    Looking forward to the sneak peak this fall. 🙂

  25. ADAXL says:

    Oh, well. I was hoping MacBU would release a really good office suite before the year was over. You know, the kinda thing worthy of the world’s No. 1 computer firm. Full compatibility with Windows office, full exchange support for Entourage, full functionality of Outlook, snappy performance, lots of other goodies.

    The delay means the new Office for Mac will appear one year later than Office for Windows. It might even lose some features (Vista did!).

  26. sladuuch says:

    Better good and delayed than crappy and now.  Of course, delayed and crappy is worse than either, so Office 2008 had better be good when it does ship.  It had better.

  27. Chad says:

    This is actually a good thing.  It means that the Office 2008 moniker will actually be correct, since it will have come out in 2008, NOT 2007!

    But since I’m still using Office v. X, I’m not sweating too much.

  28. Mike in Alaska says:

    A disappointing announcement-and I’m sure a tough decision. So, I’ll weigh in with a perspective from a loyal Mac user from the late 80’s until my workplace switched to PC’s in 97…and I finally got sick of maintaining a personal PC at home and ‘switched’ back to Mac in 2006. Here it is: Like many people, I cannot get access to my workplace Exchange Server for my personal computer (PC or Mac). I think the ability that Entourage has to check Outlook Web Mail and treat it as another Entourage mailbox is incredibly useful to me. The fact that the calendar actually syncs with my work Outlook calendar is key for me. So, my message is: ADD FUNCTIONALITY. I want tasks, and further refined functions. I want access to contacts (even downloading the GAL from Exchange?) I think many users of Office 2004 are comletely unaware of this cool feature of Entourage-I ran into it on the MacBU Blogs, BTW. Make it better-and advertise it. Make me drool for 2008….oh yeah-and since my workplace won’t let me have access to the Exchange server, I’ll add that my experiences in trying to get work email and calendar functions (which as I said I get in Entourage) synched in any succesful fashion to either a Treo 650 or my newer Blackberry Pearl have been a disappointment. Want to really wow us? Add enhanced features to Entourage for checking OWA and ‘forwarding’ mail and calendar events to a smartphone…remembering that OWA is the only ‘portal’ I have into my work Exchange Server. A tall order…but in the meantime, I want to say that the existence and quality of Office 2004 was a key point in my decision to ‘switch back’ to the Mac. I’ll look forward to 2008…especially since you’re now gonna use the extra time to give me what I need 🙂

  29. Mike in Alaska says:

    A disappointing announcement-and I’m sure a tough decision. So, I’ll weigh in with a perspective from a loyal Mac user from the late 80’s until my workplace switched to PC’s in 97…and I finally got sick of maintaining a personal PC at home and ‘switched’ back to Mac in 2006. Here it is: Like many people, I cannot get access to my workplace Exchange Server for my personal computer (PC or Mac). I think the ability that Entourage has to check Outlook Web Mail and treat it as another Entourage mailbox is incredibly useful to me. The fact that the calendar actually syncs with my work Outlook calendar is key for me. So, my message is: ADD FUNCTIONALITY. I want tasks, and further refined functions. I want access to contacts (even downloading the GAL from Exchange?) I think many users of Office 2004 are comletely unaware of this cool feature of Entourage-I ran into it on the MacBU Blogs, BTW. Make it better-and advertise it. Make me drool for 2008….oh yeah-and since my workplace won’t let me have access to the Exchange server, I’ll add that my experiences in trying to get work email and calendar functions (which as I said I get in Entourage) synched in any succesful fashion to either a Treo 650 or my newer Blackberry Pearl have been a disappointment. Want to really wow us? Add enhanced features to Entourage for checking OWA and ‘forwarding’ mail and calendar events to a smartphone…remembering that OWA is the only ‘portal’ I have into my work Exchange Server. A tall order…but in the meantime, I want to say that the existence and quality of Office 2004 was a key point in my decision to ‘switch back’ to the Mac. I’ll look forward to 2008…especially since you’re now gonna use the extra time to give me what I need 🙂

  30. We’ve made the difficult decision to delay Office:Mac 2008. We’re targeting Macworld Expo in January

  31. Carsten says:

    The only thing I need, is a fully compatible exchange client. Forget about the rest in the suite, cause I found really good working alternatives. Please, tell more about Entourage and it’s features. I just want to know, if I have to look for a substitue for our exchange server – maybe leopard server.

  32. Jon says:

    Sorry to hear this …. worth getting it spot on though!

    I think the sneak peaks will be welcome …. I must admit that I am not using Office as much as I have done in the past. This is not being clever or irritating, but there will have to be some BIG reasons why I would stop using Keynote and also Neoffice.

    I look forward to the progress and release with anticipation!

  33. DJ-Night says:

    We’re in an “all hands on deck” mode right now to ensure Office 2008 gets finished on time

    …. lol ….. you are already no more in your initial planification 🙁

    That’s too bad !

    Maybee more good Project Managers would help deliver in the time your product !

    The full community is waiting on you ! Frustrating and bad news for the Mac community every month !

    Why the other companies developp on the same time their programm on multi OS and Microsoft never can ?

    I just find that a little TOO MUCH !

    Sorry for this comment but we can’t more correctly work if someone as 2007 documents and other one 2004/2003 !

    No compatibility ! And stop saiding convert the documents ! It’s actually impossible to convert any Excel file on a Mac ! I need to start my Parallel programm !

    I hope the result would be good !

  34. Grant says:

    First of all, I wanted to thank you for all of your hard work.  Someone needed to say it!

    However, I think everyone will agree that the MacBU needed a kick, and I’m glad to see that someone has stepped in to do that.

    Its quite sad that it took MacBU over three years since we’ve seen an upgrade to a product.    I’m not just talking about Office.  The RDP client upgrade was promised almost a YEAR ago now, and it could have used one way before that.  Other than minor security tweaks and MSN Messenger "upgrades", Microsoft has actively left itself out of the community.

    I won’t be purchasing 2008 because of missing VBA integration, but its nice to see the company supporting the Mac platform again.

  35. Karlton says:

    The most important thing for our university would be full parity between entourage and outlook so exchange works the way it’s supposed to. Technically, 95% of our users won’t use any new features anyway. Unless a company completely rewrites human interface interaction, how much do you need to upgrade a word processor or spreadsheet program (of course they do need to work and not crash repeatedly).

  36. MacGeek Pro says:

    First off, thank you, Craig, for at least releasing this news tidbit instead bottling up. And I am sure all of the negative comments have been giving you gray hairs. I hate to say it, but I am going to add a couple of gray hairs.

    CURRENT PROBLEM: Fix whatever line(s) of code in the current Messenger that cause it to crash every time I close a chat window in it! I know it is caused by Safari 3 Beta being installed, but I am not willing to give up Safari 3, especially when Messenger appears to be the only app affected. If the problem exists now, it will in October for everybody when they upgrade to Leopard. Fix the problem now, and save yourself a hoard of wtf’s later.

    FUTURE ISSUES: Whereas I did enjoy bragging to my Windows friends when Office 2004 came out that I had Mac-Exclusive features, it turned out to not be so cool in college, because sometimes things just weren’t compatible. Compatibility is key, Craig. Trim out the Mac-Exclusive stuff, no matter how much whizz-bang it adds to Office 2008. It just isn’t compatible. Instead of wasting time on Mac-Exclusive stuff, focus on feature parity with Windows.

    GENERAL MIND-RAMBLING: I can’t say I was too impressed by the fact that converters won’t be available until after Office even ships, Craig. My school just transitioned every PC on campus to Office 2007 over the summer. You know what that means for productivity on my MacBook? It’s screwed!

    So, here is my hope for the future of your products (unless your team starts collaborating with the Windows Office guys more). I hope Apple takes your goon of a messaging program and makes it better and builds it into iChat. Also, I hope iWork ’08 has the ability to READ and WRITE the new office format. Apple has had plenty of time to reverse engineer that from Office 2007. Something I just don’t understand how the same company can’t release file format stuff for multiple platforms at the same time. My thought is that the Mac BU just doesn’t communicate with the Windows Office team. They wait on the sidelines. A bunch of bench warmers.

    Have fun warming pine. I’ve been using Pages successfully for the last couple semesters, I hope iWork ’08 will allow me to do the same.

  37. ivan says:

    would love it if we could finally get MS Project and MS Visio included in the Mac Office. Is there even a 25% chance that this would ever happen. Also are you guys woried that MacBU could be shut down once Intel Macs have flooded the market and everyone just realizes that it’s easier to use Office 2007 within boot camp etc?

  38. I’m sorry to hear about the delay. This has been the first version of Office I’ve been really intrigued by in a while. I appreciate that the floating toolbar UI of v.X and 2004 are being ditched, and I’m one of the few users who probably won’t miss VB anyway.

    That said, it might serve as an olive branch if some kind of open beta could be implemented for users who are that eager to move off of 2004 (I’m especially thinking of the Intel users). Barring that, releasing say Word 2008 ahead of the rest would perhaps quell some criticism. I know these decisions involve more people than just you, but I’m thinking out loud here … trying to offer solutions rather than mere criticisms.

  39. Russ says:

    This is unfortunate, but I understand the challenge and certainly prefer a polished product over something that isn’t ready for "prime time" use. Since this will be the first version written for Intel, I’m really hoping for a product that is as close as possible to the PC version and with 100% cross platform compatibility. As others have posted, PPT is especially bad about rendering files differently. Please, above ALL ELSE, make PPT 100% cross platform, PLEASE! I’ve waited 3 years for an upgrade, what’s another 4 months. Here’s to January!

  40. Lucky Lou says:

    I’m glad Craig and team are working hard and taking a critical honest look at where they are. Delays are OK, albeit disappointing. It’s just more time for build-up of customer anticipation and expectations. It’s not like they’ll lose significant sales to iWork or other competition.

    What I am ticked about is the statement that they’re not going to get converters out for Office 2007 until after release of 2008. That is stupendously LAME. It’s just a stinking converter, it shouldn’t be that hard for only THE COMPANY THAT WROTE THE FORMAT IN THE FIRST PLACE. You guys have more than a few smart people over there. Write the darn converter already.

    To those whining about Office 2004 being lame, etc., I invite you to get a grip on reality. It’s a great application suite and more than adequate for the next six months until 2008 comes out. It’s not fun using the same dang software for the past four years, but come on, we use it in a big office and it’s fine for everyone.

    And to address Mike in Alaska’s comments, I’ve had no issues with syncing to an Exchange Server 2003 with a Treo 650, 700p, and 755p, nor any issues syncing with same server using Entourage’s Exchange functionality. There’s no need for MS to develop weird workarounds to deal with what sounds like a lack of ability on your and/or your IT department’s part. If you can access OWA you can access Exchange with Entourage.

    OK, Craig, again, good luck. I strangely find this delay encouraging. Bravo. Now get with the converters, please!!!!!

  41. Jake says:

    Disappointed…but hardly surprised.  With the lack of concrete info, feature sets and screenshots, anyone who couldn’t have predicted missing the "Fall" window wasn’t paying attention.

    What concerns me is that the delay isn’t really that long.  Here we have a product that we hardly have any details on, and it’s now been delayed by only a few months if January is the target.

    So MacBU can’t tell us anything about Office in terms of features, and the quality isn’t there so they’re not releasing it now.  But two or three months will magically make it all better?  

    Improved quality from today?  Sure.  Something I’d want to put on my computer the first day it’s out?  No way.

    I think we’ll see one of two things happen.

    1. The release date will slip again.

    2. It will be released in January, but you wouldn’t want to be the first in line to put it on production systems.  

    I fear it will be another MS title that requires you to follow the advice of, "Wait until the first Service Pack".

    As much as people here, myself included, have begged for regular, concrete info from MacBU, I’m to the point where I almost wish you’d shut down this blog and not say anything until you go RTM.  

    I don’t even want to know when you _think_ it will ship…just maintain radio silence until it’s out.  Because so far whatever openness there has been here just inspires more hostility.

    Like a bad relationship, sometimes the two sides need to get far away from each other for a while.

  42. Jared says:

    There is now ZERO excuse for an Entourage without actual, native, Exchange support.  Sorry guys, but  the open source community is making you look like fools with NeoOffice and Evolution.  Intel native, VB support, Office 2007 file format support, and Exchange support.

    Who ever said free software was poor quality?!  They’re handing you your own butt.

  43. sppedbumper says:

    this blows big time,

    no more ms office for me on mac,

    by jan 2008, open office aqua will be out of beta and in the meantime neooffice will do,

    countless times have i got caught with ms office 2004 being incompatible with win office,

    why the hell can’t macbU hire more people to do the job on time?

  44. Lyle Johnson says:

    A quick response to the comment from "Mike in Alaska", who requested that the MacBU use this extra time to "ADD FUNCTIONALITY":

    I think the Microsoft developers know this, but this is not the time to be throwing in new features (above and beyond what you’ve already added to the Office 2008 code). Fix what’s there, and shoot for an as-stable-as-possible release in January. If there’s new stuff that should be added, save that for Office 2009, or even some kind of intermediate upgrade.

  45. Sketch says:

    Office is delayed. Fine. No converters out? Not fine.

    All hands should be on those converters first, since the end product won’t be here soon enough.

  46. Harald Pedersen says:

    I look forward to this release!!

    Keep on the good work guys!

    Harald, Norway

  47. Rob says:

    My company has delayed roll-out of Office 2007 until Mac compatibility can be assured, but had planned to update all of our systems starting this fall.  I don’t know what the final plans will now change to, but either option is bad.

    My recommendation: Prioritize, prioritize, prioritize.  Here are the two top items for me and others in my company:

     * A file conversion tool to bridge the gap between me and outsiders who upgrade.  (Did you really need me to tell you that?)

     * A fully compatible exchange client.

    Both of these would be good to have available yesterday.  Perhaps you could sell them alone, making the other office applications available as free downloads?

  48. MacManWA says:

    Well, as some other have said…  with this delay until January of 2008, Office 2008 had better be good–really, really good.

  49. maczter says:

    One more plea for feature/function parity between Entourage and Outlook 2007.

    I’m at a large publishing company and one of the people in charge of purchasing decisions has recently started moving our editors off of Macs and onto PC’s. The missing functionality in Entourage is her only concrete reason when she’s approacehd about it (unless you count herridiculous price comparisons between Mac Pros and Dell Optiplexes). Having this feature/functionality parity would return us to being able to make more rational decisions rather than her winning an argument just because the e-mail client doesn’t do half the stuff that the PC version will do.

  50. Elliot says:

    Said it before, and I’ll say it again:

    The only thing I hate more than Microsoft products is the fact that I’m forced to use them by people ignorant of alternatives.

  51. Chris says:

    I went to look at Neo Office, and I found it interesting that on the website was this blurb "Since NeoOffice is developed by volunteers and tested by users, we expect that users will find crashing or other serious bugs. We strongly recommend that you save your work frequently so that if you encounter a crashing bug, you will not lose much data. If you feel that you need software that has been heavily tested, we recommend that you use a commercially-supported product like Microsoft Office or Apple iWork."

    Uuuuhhhmmmm hate to seem like I am defending M$, but I don’t think I would want to try and support that in a corporate environment. I guess they are saying that just to make sure they have their butts covered, but still, it does not make me feel like it would be very reliable.

    For those people who are asking/ begging for things like Viso and Project, your best bet is going to be to run the Windows version through something like VMware.

    Also, for the people hoping for a "real" exchange client, I don’t think you will ever see one through the MacBU. Entourage currently has support for the things that 90% of Entourage users already do/ need to do. Those things that are missing, or are incomplete, are just not going to be that important to a large majority of the Mac Users who are running Entourage. And my 90% figure is just a wild guess, because I have never seen any Exchange user who used even half of the functionality that is there.

    I do consulting for a publisher who has over 100 users, about 25 of those being Mac users. They use Mail, GAL, and personal calendars, and that is all. That is very limited functionality on their part when considering how much exchange costs.

    The 2 things that I wish would get fixed in Office 2004. First is the random beach ball in Entourage (I am guessing it is somehow related to the Exchange synchronization, mostly because I have never seen it happen as often as it does on Entourage clients that are connected to an exchange server. And second, in both Entourage and Word, the fairly frequent lock up while typing, only to come back to life life and finally show the text on screen that you had been typing when the application decided to have a fit of ADD.

    And please tell me why… why MSN messenger, and not just go with Addium?

  52. Jeff says:

    I understand delays happen. I just want to jump on the pile by stating it is quite ridiculous that you guys can’t get out Converters in a timely fashion. With the exception of Entourage, I’m not dying. Office under Rosetta has been plenty fine.

    If you are going to make us wait, why not let us know now which Exchange integration features you will support so that I can either really hate you or love you now before the spiked Egg Nog and Turkey is administered. Our clients need to make some business decisions based on facts now.

    Full Outlook feature parity is needed like 6 years ago. Stop asking us what are the top 3  features we want now. Spend some money, expand the development team and get on with it. We’ve been waiting so long for it, the MacBU team tag line should be "The Blue Balls of Microsoft!"

  53. Microsoft’s new Macintosh Business Unit (MacBU) General Manager, Craig Eisler, announced this morning that Microsoft Office 2008, originally scheduled for release in the second half of 2007, won’t be available until January 2008….

  54. Lee Givens says:

    Wow, Mac users are babies (yes, I’ve been Mac-only for 20 years).  Remember back to life before Office 98.  Remember Word 6?  I’m using Office 2004 on my Intel Macs and it’s fine for the 7 hours a day I use the MacBU’s software.  What’s the big deal?  Want PowerPoint to load 5 seconds faster?

  55. Kabel says:

    Craig,

    I hope you are the man to take the MacBU from an all time low to the top. I hope this delay is because you set the bar much higher than previously.

    Here’s some advice:

    1. We need a good surprise from you guys and we need it soon; the Mac community is loosing faith  in you – something as unthinkable as an early release, VBA support or a new product.

    2. Hire more people to get the job done.

    3. Stop making "Mac-only features" until Office has ALL the functionality of its PC counterpart. What do we care if there is a Mac-only Publishing Layout View if Office does not support VBA?

    4. Make Office a PRO application – not an iWork-inspired, down-trimmed, bubbly-looking, light version of Office 2007. If you want style inspiration, get it from Adobe CS3: feature-rich, streamlined and consistent.

  56. I’m disappointed that it’s late, but am sure the wait will be worth it!  I agree that I’d prefer a stable, polished version of Word/Excel/PowerPoint/Entourage in first-quarter 2008.

    What about retail availability in the rest of the world?

  57. Mark Rushton says:

    Ah, Word 5.1.  The last version of Word that was really worth a damn. Don’t even get me started on Word 6.0!

    I’m now coming up on six months working in an academic / publishing environment without Office.  Neo Office, particularly since Patch 5, is a more than viable alternative for 90% of Office users.  In the past month I’ve moved a dozen friends & family away from non-Intel Office to the open source suite.

    Keynote alone is worth abandoning Office. PowerPoint?  A distant memory.

    Goodbye, Microsoft. My hard drive has never been happier.

  58. Roger says:

    Really, awful.  Sadly this isn’t even going to be a product that has full exchange support.  We get it, you don’t think this is important to the business world.

  59. Richard says:

    "Better late than never."

    Office O8 is the only major piece of software that is not Intel-Mac compatible.  

    We appreciate your efforts, Craig. We all recognize that your company is not good a releasing new software.  Look at Vista.  A few months late on Office ’08 is better than the delay in getting Vista out.

    You will probably set a record by being a few months close to your original target.

  60. Peet says:

    Doesn’t bother me. I’m not going to get it anyway. Office 2004 suits me fine.

  61. Smolan says:

    The big test is whether you guys (MBU) are going to allow Entourage to import data from Outlook.

    This time around, please act like a company that wants to develop products that meet your customers needs.

  62. Michele says:

    Someone suggested that you adopt the following pricing structure (which seems clear and straightforward to me)

    $299 Microsoft Office 2008 for Macintosh Home Basic (Word, Excel, Powerpoint)

    $149 Microsoft Office 2008 for Macintosh Home Basic Upgrade from Office 2004

    $399 Microsoft Office 2008 for Macintosh Home Premium (Word, Excel, Powerpoint, Entourage)

    $249 Microsoft Office 2008 for Macintosh Home Premium Upgrade from Office 2004

    $499 Microsoft Office 2008 for Macintosh Business (Word, Excel, Powerpoint, Outlook)

    $349 Microsoft Office 2008 for Macintosh Business Upgrade from Office 2004

    $599 Microsoft Office 2008 for Macintosh Enterprise (Word, Excel, Powerpoint, Outlook and 5000 extra pieces of clipart)

    $449 Microsoft Office 2008 for Macintosh Enterprise Upgrade from Office 2004

    $749 Microsoft Office 2008 for Macintosh Ultimate (everything above plus a free Pink Zune!)

    $599 Microsoft Office 2008 for Macintosh Ultimate Upgrade from Office 2004

    $149 Microsoft Office 2008 for Macintosh Student Teacher

  63. Darren says:

    Obviously this is disappointing–I just bought a MBP in anticipation of 08 coming in 2 months–but now its more like 6.

    Honestly, 2004 is fine from a feature perspective, but I am finding that Rosetta does have its share of issues.  I am a heavy, heavy user of Excel and PowerPoint, and each has its own quirks under emulation.

    Excel crashes often enough that I am saving documents every 2 minutes (I get about 3 crashes a day when I’m cranking).  PowerPoint seems more stable, but constantly leaves artifacts behind from moving objects around the screen (is this a Santa Rosa driver issue?)  And even on the 2.2 C2D, performance across the suite is only adequate and not really snappy.

    The reality is that 2004 is workable (but far from ideal) for the time being and when it is not, I have a 2003 install in my Boot Camp/Fusion setup.  Unfortunately, the lack of VB and Access will require me to hang onto the PC version of the suite for a while.

  64. rogco says:

    If your ability to write an English blog entry is any reflection on your coding, we’re all in for trouble.

    "…and as you know might imagine, this was a tough slip for us…."

  65. MacBU GM Craig Eisler posted a new release date on the MacMojo blog. Office 2008 for Mac will be available in the US in mid-January 2008 (planning for Macworld) and global general availability will occur in the first quarter of 2008….

  66. mfojas says:

    You know what? I really wouldn’t care if the release date slipped till 2009– just so you could give me SOME glimmer of a hope that there would be a MAPI client, or FULL FEATURE PARITY with Outlook. Entourage is the main tool, man, followed by Excel, then Word. Powerpoint just seems hopeless when frickin’ KEYNOTE translates files better than PPT 2004. Dear lord, if any group needs a "come to Jesus" meeting, it’s the Mac BU.

    Craig, a reality check is in order because you are missing huge business opportunities. The Mac BU would be taken seriously by IT administration, and you would see volume licenses pouring in, if you would just give us some feature and collaboration parity for Entourage, Excel, and Word.

  67. TX Ciclista says:

    Well, I was trying to hold off on buying iWorks but this cinches it.  I start a graduate program in a few weeks and I’m not gonna hold out until January for something better than Office 2004.  You just lost whatever the Student/Teacher price was.  Good job.

  68. mfojas says:

    I repeat: Entourage, Excel, Word. THOSE SHOULD BE YOUR PRIORITIES (and in that order). Feature and collaboration parity with Windows clients

    in these applications will determine whether or not you can right this sinking ship that is the MacBU. It would also be nice if Mac users could dip into Sharepoint tools to some degree.

    I could care less about Powerpoint since Keynote does a better job of transferring files than Powerpoint 2004.

    The reason why you don’t have more Enterprise customers is because you constantly repeat the same mantra of "our -current- customers don’t request these features" AHEM. yeah. I wonder why the other 97% of the world aren’t your customers.

    Entourage 2004 was a bone thrown in Mac enterprise users’ direction. Give us some meat in 2008.

  69. TA says:

    This is disappointing, but not entirely unexpected, considering the state of the beta.

    Please please please make it fully consistent with the Windows versions – full functionality as a real Exchange client for Entourage, full compatibility with Word and PP for Win.

    Anything else is going to shoo your customers out the door to iWork and Open Office so fast you’ll feel the wind all the way to the MacBU offices.

    The bit about the converters being even later is, well, a real kick in the pants.  Lovely docx and its siblings are becoming more of a headache with each passing day.  Tacking on another 6-8 months of increasing pain provides confirmation of the wisdom of my decision to install NeoOffice on every machine I build now.  Don’t be surprised if users like it and decide to stay.

    The only way to be sure they will return when 2008 hits is to make your product an *error-free* companion to Office 2007.  **EVERYTHING** must work just as though it was the Win version, or it won’t be worth a damn, regardless of the quantity of hard work your team puts into it.

    Finally, for the love of God, get a bigger staff!!!  I’m sure you’re aware of this problem, so consider this one more voice in the chorus that you can take to your managers.  MacBU doesn’t have the hands to get the job done the way it needs to be done (on time and complete).  A manager’s first responsibility is to get the team the resources it needs.  In this case, that means more skilled coders.

    Good luck in keeping this new time line!

  70. JT says:

    Hey Craig,

    I work in software so I understand.  It’s disappointing but I’m sure that there are good reasons; certainly better to release quality software late rather than a POS early.  What would be nice, though, is to make a beta available.  I use Office 2004 and it certainly does the job.  I’ll admit that Office 2007 makes me a bit jealous, but I’m sure that you’ll give them a run for their money in January.

    Just a voice of reason in a sea of madness.

  71. Cordell says:

    One schedule slip will likely beget others given Microsoft’s track record with Vista.  With an Intel Mac, I have waited patiently more than a year for a Universal binary version of Office.  My patience has now run out and I will be purchasing Apple iWork ’08 with my California/Microsoft Antitrust Settlement check.  Rumor has it that Apple will have a basic Excel app in its new suite.  If not, the NeoOffice or OpenOffice equivalent will suffice.  Considering the pervasiveness of Microsoft’s malaise, Apple’s ’08 suite will likely be more compatible with Office ’03 and ’07 than Microsoft Office 2008 for the Mac.  This company is definitely not the same Microsoft that vanquished Lotus two decades ago.  Of course, with no prospect of becoming a new "Microsoft Millionaire," the employee morale and motivation is not what it once was either.

  72. Mike in Alaska says:

    I got home this evening and browsed these comments-and saw two references to my earlier post. I don’t think I communicated my point thoroughly: Like an awful lot of people out there, my (government) employer WILL NOT let me connect to their exchange server. Not now. Not ever. Before configuring Entourage to check my OWA this relegated me to having the large part of my life (70+ hrs/week) organized only on my computer at work. Now..not being an IT pro, and putting enough time into maintaining Outlook organization for calendering and tasks, etc at work, I’m simply frustrated by the lack of a good solution on the part of Apple or MS to help me out here-I have limited calendering on my home Mac(s) along with work email via OWA in Entourage, but no tasks, no Global Address List for addressing emails to work folks-and synching with a smart phone from my home computer (again-without the ability to connect my personally owned cell phone to the exchange server) is just not there. OK, so I’m lobbying for Office 2008 to offer an enhanced solution. Why? because right now, the thin tether of connectivity I do have is through accessing Outlook Web Access through Entourage. Maybe that’s what my detractors didn’t realize? I’m positioning that my situation is representative of many thousands of people out there. I’m willing to spend money on a MAC solution. Whoever gets it to me first-Apple of MS, will get my money.

    I agree with the argument that adding bells and whistles at this point is folly-get it out, and make it good…BUT: this disconnectivity between work and home computing is a big, dumb problem. It’s too easy for everyone to disavow any obligation to solve it…and again, the current ability to access Outlook Web Access through Entourage IS THE CLOSEST THING IVE EVER SEEN TO A SOLUTION. I use it every day. Now, I just want you to realize what you’ve got-and the problem(s) you can solve here by adding some focus to it. For all you Entourage 2004 users out there-if you have Outlook Web Access to your work email, and you use Safari, Firefox or Explorer to check your work email, and are frustrated by the disconnect between home and work-then Google "checking Outlook Web Access with Entourage" It’s on a MacBU blog. Give it a shot-it’s easy. See what I’m talking about. Then you’ll understand my post-I want them to acknowledge the value and the market-and make it better. That’s all.

  73. Dave says:

    Perhaps it would be a good idea to use the 4-5 month extension that you now have, and hire on a "few" (read:lots) extra developers to start working on VBA – even if you supplied a VBA "add-on" mid-2008, it would eventually allow VBA-dependent Excel users upgrade to Office 2008 at SOME point!

  74. Chris Mahoney says:

    Although a delay is always annoying, I personally don’t mind… as long as it ends up on MSDN this time around! Any news regarding this?

  75. Office 2008 Coming January 2008 blog post from Mac Mojo has the details.

  76. Cedric says:

    Really revolting for the 1st software company in the world to be uncapable to make software on time it’s unbeliveable and innacceptable don’t tell me that Microsoft don’t have the money ?????

    And MBU should be working with the windows one not competing and maybe we won’t be in that type of situation ! and i don’t know if you realise but by not realesing Office 2008 in the world at same time and only in the US, you will have less people buying it as we will find it in Bitorrent and P2P network as people can’t wait and need a Native version.

  77. Armond@catf.us says:

    I just switched fffrom PC to Mac and am frustrated with two things in Entourage:

    1. Can’t read old Outlook messages saved with msg file extension

    2. url addresses in body of enoturage message are not clikcable.

    I am, sadly, going back to PC because of this

    Maybe that’s Microsoft’s intention?  . .  . .

  78. Paul from Joisey says:

    I have been using a Mac since 1984, the 128K memory version, through to a Mac Book Pro.  Word, Multiplan, and File were the tools of my trade for quite some time.  File is gone, Multiplan has evolved into Excel and Word has grown up (including teenage crappy growing pains, 6.0)  to be the gold standard for word processing, Mac or PC. In these twenty three years of work almost exclusively on Macs, I have been well served by Microsoft products.  I dearly miss Mac Project the most of the set of now defunct MS Mac applications that I depend upon and one of the reasons that I have to use Windows.  

    Entourage has become one of the most important applications that I have ever used. Period. We have an Exchange server that takes care of our calendaring and some fraction of e-mail distribution (balance via IMAP.) (Our organization has in excess of 5000 employees in a mixed PC, Mac and Linux/Unix environment.) At the risk of piling on here, we NEED parity with Outlook in speed.  Entourage works okay on a Power PC Mac, but it is such a dog on the Intel Mac, I go offline 6 or 7 times an hour, just to get my e-mail done.  This needs to be fixed and fixed well,  Feature parity with Outlook would be awesome, but a lower priority than performance.  

    Word and Excel work adequately under Rosetta.  Power Point works barely adequately and Entourage does not work adequately under Rosetta.

    Not having VBA support is going to be problem from my interoperability with my colleagues, I am afraid.  I’ll probably keep a copy of Excel vers. 11 on my computer to allow the (frequent) times that I need to use spreadsheets with macros.

    Thanks very much for applications that have made me very successful working on my Mac. The products have been good.  I’d love to see Project come back to the Mac.  Make the products wonderful.  We’ll forget the delay if they are great.

  79. N.N. Thayer says:

    "Office O8 is the only major piece of software that is not Intel-Mac compatible."

    Actually, Intuit has yet to release a UB of Quicken, or even announce an intent to do so.

  80. nicknowsky says:

    Christ all mighty!! We should at least get a beta or RC at the least!! As easily available Office 2007 betas where to Winbdows users, you guys should at least give some beta access to us.  As you can see all the complaints bout Office 2004, it would show some good faith to the loyal Mac Office users to let us get a beta copy!!

  81. M. Ryan says:

    The MacBU is not perfect, but I agree with the above post.

    Intuit is a far flagrant violator of "The PC version is better and the Mac version can suck it" behavior.

    Office 2008 needs to be fully compatible with Office 2007 for Windows, and it probably will be.  How could the MacBU (or even Microsoft)possibly explain how this new file format for Office 2007 is supposed to be a "standard" when it doesn’t even work between the Windows and Mac versions?

    VBA support…everyone is clamoring for it, I’ve never used it…but if it’s that important than I agree with the person who suggested it be a free download as an add-on even a year from now if that is what it takes Microsoft to re-add VBA support to Office 2008.

  82. Angus Fox says:

    Well this is a shame and its gonna hurt.

    I do not care if Office Mac looks like the Fluent UI in Office 2007. If thats part of the hold its misguided.

    I do need something on my Mac to be absolutely 100% compatible with the 2007 file formats and macros.

    I do need something to be 100% able to get my email, contacts and calendars from Exchange (via OWA protocols is fine – I dont care if its got MAPI)

    And. I need to be able to get to Office Live from a Mac. It absolutely and utterly sucks that now Im trialing Office Live I cant read my email anymore on my mac because

    "In order to use Microsoft Office Live, you will need to have Microsoft Internet Explorer 6 or later running on Microsoft Windows 2000, Windows XP, Windows Vista, or Microsoft Windows Server 2003. You can download the latest version of Internet Explorer from the Internet Explorer downloads page. "

    Craig, I think you might think thats not a MacBU issue but you know it really is a Microsoft Mac problem and you ought to have enough clout to be able to fix it. If Mac users cant access Office Live then its not Office Live its Office Windows Live.

    Furthermore, I am sure it cant have escaped your attention that even Quark and Adobe are now Universal binaries. Mariner Softwares award winning Mariner Write and Mariner Calc are Universal too.

    Cant you just at least recompiple Office 2004 to run natively on Intel and throw it out as an opt in upgrade for the patient. (given that compilers and intel instruction sets are MSFT core competence this cant be beyond doable)

    Oh and I suppose youve got enough issues but I feel I should say ‘wheres onenote, project, access, accounting, Expression, Sharepoint Designer and many other Office orphans…..

    Angus

  83. Peter says:

    Some of the above have suggested that you could supply a VBA "add-on" mid-2008, as it  allow VBA-dependent Excel users upgrade to Office 2008 eventualy.  That is an excelent idea.

    Can you possibly indicate on this blog whether that is a possibility?

  84. Phil Luthman says:

    I’m very disappointed that it has taken SO LONG to have a Universal version of Office for the Mac.  If Apple releases iWork in October, I don’t think i’ll even bother with Office 2008.  

    We have 2 Mac notebooks in the family.  Hands down, ALL office applications open 2-3x’s faster on our 3 year old iBook G4 THAN our dual core Macbook Pro!!!  This is unacceptable.

    Many customers are fed up with Microsoft with the poor performance of Vista, and now the other shoe has fallen with Office in this delay.  You’ll have to give me a copy of Office 2008 for free if I’ll look at it.  

    I might change my mind later, but as of right now, I am VERY frustrated.

  85. ntegral says:

    Is it possible to be on of the beta testers for the Office 2008 product?

  86. Kent says:

    The new Parallels Beta supports Expose for Windows windows.  I’m perfectly content at this point with Office 2007 running in Parallels on a Mac.  I’m getting great performance and (obviously) 100% fidelity with Office and support for Exchange.

    Microsoft should disband the MacBU, acquire Parallels, and do some great work to skin the Mac look and feel on any apps running inside the Parallels VM.  I’d also be happy with MS-made extensions to MacOS that make Macs more friendly in a PC Server environment.  MS would also likely give better pricing to end users looking to adopt a Parallels + Windows solution.

    In so doing, Apple effectively becomes another PC OEM for Microsoft.  Apple’s success will also likely translate into Microsoft’s success.

  87. apple macos says:

    Well what can I say, I am a bit disappointed, I did wait it and I also Borrow the money from my friend and then boom, nothing, but I still can wait to try it, who know maybe this delay is good for someone (and maybe for me)

  88. macuser says:

    WHO DO YOU HAVE WORKING FOR YOU?

    They must all be completely incompetent programmers. Seriously, how can you not have file converters almost a year after the PC version ships? This is not a difficult project to do. It’s not like you have to reverse engineer the format like Open Office BUT YET they manage to do it WAY before you do.

    Are you serious MS?

  89. JerseyKid says:

    Some of the comments, blah, typical Apple FanBoy Microsoft hating – but realize they can’t do without Office – noise.

    Apple completely changes to x86ers, doesn’t tell anyone until the last minute while they get a head start on their own programs, than Apple’s fans wonder why everyone else is so slow to get products out the door.

    If you need Office so bad just use Boot Camp or visualization.  Or get a PC.

  90. I lead a team of 35 techs and admins that manage 2000 Macs world-wide.  We need Entourage to have MAPI for Exchange connectivity, not (just) OWA.  PLEASE do this.

    Thanks.

  91. Adam says:

    I am switching to iWork and aim

  92. Chip says:

    This is ridiculous. Office 04 is horrible on an Intel MBP. This sucks for college kids since they will have to wait until January to buy it. Luckily i get a free copy from Drexel University’s IRT website, but i wouldn’t pay a dime for office 04.

    Enough with these "Mac only features," we want full compatiblity with Office 07.

    This along with Vista is the beginning of the end of the total supremacy of Microsoft.

  93. Janus says:

    Hasn’t it occured to anyone that Microsoft is DELIBERATELY shafting the MacBU?

    With the Mac’s growing market share, maaaaybe MS feels a little threatened about long-term implications. Denying full Office compatibility throws a major wrench into the gears of people who might have switched, who were "on the edge" but the extra hassle of worrying Office didn’t work quite right deterred them from taking the jump..

    After all, the most common complaint seems to be "I guess I will have to buy Windows/Parallels and Office 2007"…oh, yeah, THAT is the last thing MS wants.

    There is no clearer proof that the Justice Department should have separated the OS and Office divisions of Microsoft than that they are so obviously sabotaging the Office versions for the competing OS.

    Shame on you, Microsoft. Not the MacBU, as I’m sure you’re doing the best you can with the insufficient resources you have. Please, SPIN YOURSELVES OFF and join Apple. At least you’ll get funding.

  94. ash435 says:

    The best thing about Office 2004 is being able to pick the useful tools from the floating toolbars and sink the rest. The Formatting palette is also excellent because it is vertical so it doesn’t waste screen space on a wide display. I also use macros all the time in Excel documents which I exchange with windows users.

    Unfortunately the office applications crash regularly and I hate having to find a place to resave every recovered file, even though I was sure they were already saved. And everything is pig slow in rosetta compared to a modern app. Given the delays, news on lost compatibility and fugly screenshots, I am already transitioning work to other applications whenever possible.

    What a shame and a smack in the face to an Office user since 98.

  95. peter says:

    I think Kent (above) misses the point.  We bought macs to have the mac experience, not windows.  If we were to run win office on parallels/windows that would defeat the point.

  96. mike Buck says:

    Just to echo most of the other comments – this sucks big time. microsoft could almost redeem itself by releasing a beta or anything else that’ll get me off office 2004 because its incredibly slow. don’t worry about openoffice too much because it won’t do it for 75% of users but do worry about office 2007 on virtualisation such as vmware. performance wise it blows office 2004 out of the water on intel and you can get all the new features without any of the hassle – you could almost wonder why you’d wait for office:mac

  97. Gareth says:

    Tomorrow my university email is being converted to Exchange and I am not looking forward to having to use Entourage in its current semi-compatible state. The other alternative, using OWA on Safari, appeals even less. Please include full MAPI support in Entourage 2008.  I look forward to the day when a Microsoft product is fully Microsoft compatible.

  98. john says:

    A bit disappointing, but I respect this choice. I do hope Office 2008 will handle the new file format without any problems…

    Well, good luck making this a good product!

  99. Enrique Garcia says:

    Well, I have to say I am disappointed and I am not happy.

    Of course now the usual list of excuses now comes up, and we will have to swallow them.

    To help the cause, I ONCE AGAIN offer the MacBU team to do some Beta test for you.

    I am a Microsoft Gold Certified Partner, Small Business Specialist and MBS Dynamics GP RMS CRM  Partner with a Windows SBS 2003 setup plus 2 Windows 2003 R2 servers,  about 20 PCs and 3 Macs in our domain.

    I believe this scenario fits very much the target market for a ‘corporate’ Office for Mac user and I believe our feedback could help MacBU deliver a good product the first time around.  Take it or leave it.

    Now, the stakes here are high, MacBU is promising a good product on a first release out the door… ¿or was this just an excuse for a poorly planned project?  I hope not.

    I wish you the best, I know these decisions are very hard, but I cannot conceal my disappointment.

    Godsped

    Enrique

    emxgarcia@mac.com

    http://www.iconsa.net

  100. Angus Fox says:

    On my comment about Office Live, I Eventually managed to get my email through Entourage but I have to be a paid subscriber to do this as the ability to read email in a mail client is considered a ‘premium’ feature of Office Live. So Ive found a workaround but it requires me to pay and puts me at a disadvantage to the free users on a Windows PC. (I only want to be a ‘free’ user)

    Angus

  101. Sixto Roman says:

    Please put full VBA support on the Mac platform. I like cross-platform features. All of your customers do.

  102. ericw says:

    Another member of the "full Exchange/Outlook" support chorus. I don’t care much about VBA. Fix the really basic stuff first; give me a good Excange client.

  103. Faramond says:

    Perhaps Microsoft should take a look at the cross-platform compatibility of open-source software: all developers have to do is recompile and, presto, a port.

    Maintaining two codebases for one product line is a monumental waste of resources, and keeping them synched is bound to result in delays.

    Sure, running Windows code on a Mac might me slower, but I’m sure users would rather a 25% speed penalty than having to wait years for a port.

  104. James Arscott says:

    iWork 08 is now out, Pages / Keynote and the new Numbers program can open/convert Office 2007 native files ! It seems Apple has beaten Microsoft to the first shipping (non beta) product for OS X that can open Office 2007!

    No worries, Entourage 2008 is still what I am waiting for !!!

  105. Jay McWhirter says:

    Why can Apple do converters before Microsoft can for their own products?  From Apple’s iWork ’08 page:

    "Import your Microsoft Word documents into Pages ’08 with ease. Whether they’re Microsoft Office Word 2007 (Office Open XML) or earlier Word files, Pages will open them. Pages imports not only the text, but also the styles, tables, inline and floating objects, charts, footnotes, endnotes, bookmarks, hyperlinks, lists, sections, change tracking, and other elements of your original Word document."

    "Versatile in so many ways, Keynote imports presentations created in Microsoft Office PowerPoint 2007 (Office Open XML) as well as earlier versions."

    "Numbers handily imports spreadsheets created in earlier Excel formats, as well as Excel 2007 documents created in new Office Open XML formats."

  106. TX Ciclista says:

    Just ordered iWork ’08.  It’ll be here Friday.  You lost.  For those that want to try it out, just add "/trail" after the main iwork address.

  107. Rob says:

    Looks like Apple beat you guys to it. iWork ’08 has been released and from what apple have published on the iWork site the suite is able to open and read Word, Excel & PowerPoint files that have been saved in Office 2007 Open XML format.

    Couple that with the addition of a spreadsheet app to iWork ’08 – Numbers, it appears that Apple are beating you guys to the game here.

    the only drawback just now is writing/saving files in Open XML format for Office 2007 however Apple already appear to be a step ahead.

  108. macuser says:

    I also ordered iWork 08. You guys lost. Sorry.

    It’s very pathetic that Apple can beat you at your own converters. If you would have made converters available earlier, I wouldn’t have jumped ship.

    Looks like Office 2004 will be the last MSFT product that I’ll ever use.

  109. Tim says:

    I downloaded the iWork trial and so far, it seems to handle Office 2007 documents without a problem.  Looks like my $79 is going towards this now instead of Office 2008, unless there are some compelling features that have yet to be shown.  Sorry, but your delays and excuses for not having converters out by now is just tiresome.

  110. Harvey Dent says:

    Ok, I don´t care about Office anymore, I´ll be using my iWork 08 but… please!!! do you REALLY have to wait so long to release a decent MS Messenger?! Don´t think is that hard!

  111. Denis Murphy says:

    iWork fully supporting Office 2007 before you guys even got to beta is to say the least laughable. i know a guy who work for a Gold Partner of Microsoft (they make a plugin for word) and they haven’t even got around to supporting Vista yet never mind Office 2007 files

    anyway Good Luck MBU

    p.s. when you do finally support your own format, please support iWork Documents too… especially Keynote 🙂

  112. Josh says:

    You guys obviously aren’t doing anything too complex with your Office files. I just tried the iWork 08 trial and it can’t even come close to handling my spreadsheets. Most of the forumlas do not work correctly. The word processor seems great but Numbers is nowhere near ready to replace Excel on my machine. I removed the program 30 minute after using the trial. Nice first attempt by Apple but nowhere near Office 04 let alone Office 08.

  113. none says:

    Man, I hope everyone drops Office 08 for iWork.  Then they can disband the MAC BU and put the job for making an Exchange client back in the hands of the people who made Outlook 2001.  They’re the only MS folks who’ve ever made a decent Exchange client.  Maybe the MAC BU should ask them for some help?

  114. J-F says:

    I also think we are going to switch to iWork 08.  We are already using Mail.app, iCal and adress book with Kerio Mail server (an exchange like server), so the exchange support was not a concern for us.  And now that Numbers is out, there is no reason to wait for Office 2008.

    sorry MACBU…

    good luck

  115. Simon Pride says:

    Let’s see:

    MS Office 2008 for Mac, a version of Office 2007, ships 2008.

    iWork ’08 ships mid-2007

    Oh, and costs 1/4 of the price of Office, for five users.

    Is there nobody at MS who can do math any more?

  116. Gareth says:

    Above I mentioned that full Exchange support via MAPI would be good to have.  If such a thing were to happen, then you should also keep WebDAV access as an option.  I say this because my university seemingly only lets people within the firewall log on with MAPI – and having to use the useless non-IE OWA on a Mac outside it would be too bad to bear.

    Why does everything with Microsoft have to be such an uphill struggle to use? I still can’t work out why when I bring a Word document created in Word for Windows that the figures and tables suddenly renumber themselves beginning at 0. Why should I have to worry about such bizarre formatting issues?

    And I hope you’re bringing the new fonts included in Office 2007 to the Mac.  When I start getting documents in Calibri I want to be able to see them properly. It’s a font I have come to like.

  117. S.J. says:

    I think this is another lame attempt by buggysoft to further alienate the Mac User. I have eliminated ALL MSFT products but messenger from my Mac. There are always alternative and to those of you who like me get sick of waiting and lame excuses try Neo Office for Free or get iWork ’08. Both have worked very well for me. I plan on taking great pleasure in my my Office ’04 CD/DVD through the shredder. I no longer will fill your coffers with my HARD EARNED money to hear excuses. So long from a former MSFT user and never again will I waste my time using such over priced bug ridden software that takes way too long to develop. Mac is no perfect but they get one thing correct: frequent updates, easy to use and I love it.

  118. Jeremy Combs says:

    OK everybody.  I’m disappointed that the MacBU has delayed Office 2008 and removed VBA support for Excel but please stop comparing it to iWork.  iWork can save in Office 2007 formats but it is not a replacement for Excel or Word because Numbers doesn’t support automation and VBA and a number of other Excel features it just saves in the Office 2007 OpenXML format.  Remember saving in different formats does not guarantee feature compatibility across the various applications using that format.

    Keep complaining maybe they’ll drop Office 2008 like they did Internet Explorer siting Apple making a comparable product via Safari yet Safari isn’t compatible with a chunk of websites out there and various MS services/sites that all require special software in IE.  Let’s not get started on Windows Media Player.  Shut up and wait for Office 2008.

  119. Scott Whitlock says:

    Uh, Jeremy, you mention that Numbers ’08 doesn’t support VBA. Guess what, neither will Excel ’08.

    And stop placating Microsoft. They’ll do whatever they want regardless if you’re their tool or not.

  120. Scott Whitlock says:

    Oh, and goodbye Microsoft. I, like countless others, are celebrating the release of iWork ’08 by removing you from my Mac and my future plans. Suddenly, the delay of Office 2008 doesn’t bother me at all…;)

  121. Roei says:

    Is there going to be any RTL writing support?

  122. Edward Parsons (London) says:

    I am very disappointed.  Maybe the upgrade is too ambitious?  It is clear that alot of potential customers are not happy and that the MacBU could have been much clearer in its communication strategy.  I like the look of iWork ’08 but recognise its limitations but for $80 (or £55 this side of the pond!) it is hard to ignore the value that it delivers.  I am deeply concerned that to differentiate it [office 2008], the MacBU has focused on delivering extra functionality that users don’t really want instead of making sure that: VBA works, Entourage is a fully MAPI client and that Office 2008 is fully integrated with all the MS server/productivity applications – such as Sharepoint, Visio, Info Path, Groove, Excel Server etc.  If these issues are not resolved then I think that most serious users will look for Mac community alternatives.  MacBU – can I suggest that you start communicating to your customer base and opinion formers sooner rather than later.  Godd luck.  Edward

  123. impetej says:

    Why is anybody shocked about this?  It is ingrained in the culture of this company.  Is this the first or last time Microsoft will do this?  No.

    I am sure this went down as acceptable.

    OpenOffice Aqua for me, once it is ready.

    Between the converters, VBA loss, delays, (and the next announced disappointment) – you guys are making the OpenOffice argument for me.

  124. Enrique García says:

    I agree.

    That is why Office 2008 Mac should deliver on ONE key area:

    Equality.. not just compatibility but true seamless feature equality wth Office 2007, anything less will be mayhem,

  125. Alan Sky says:

    I understand that with the .net architecture change and the Mac intel move, you need time to release Office 2008 but with the extra delay now I cannot understand the VBA dismissal since the MacBU said earlier: "supporting VBA would add a 9 months delay".

    We need VBA in Office to be compatible with colleagues and other law firms who produce Word documents.

    It’s true that iWork is slick although it now lacks some pro features. But as it costs less and comes with new features with each release, it may become a real alternative next time so don’t mess with Office 2008.

    Dear MacBU, compatibility with the Windows side is your best competitive advantage, if you lose that, your future may be in question.

  126. Elliot says:

    Man, you know what’s great?  Working with a 150 page Word file in Word ’04 at 2am.  I hate your product so  much.  

    I just got a great error message along the lines of "Your document contains too many edits, and the action you have requested will not be competed.  Please save your work".  Hey, why didn’t you use the time that it took to run focus groups and have standing meetings for three months to make that error message to instead fix the bug that makes Word unstable after 100 pages or so?

    You guys suck.

  127. Andy K says:

    I hate to parrot what’s pretty much inanimous by this point, but feature-compatibility with Windows Office is essential.

    As a Mac user, I use Office for Mac because some things requires MS/Windows compatibility, whether I like it or not.

    So far I’ve found that Word for Mac otushines Neo/OpenOffice for me. Same for Excel. But much as I love Entourage, I just don’t feel it’s yet where it needs to be. Mainly as it just doesn’t bring in everything (notes, categories, tasks, etc) that’s in my Outlook/Exchange profile.

    I love the look and feel of it, but it really does need to be a fully featured Exchange client.

    Mac-only features are pretty much useless, as I’m sure I’m not the only person who uses MS Office for Mac to avoid (for once) the differences between the platforms.  Full feature compatibility and the 2007-format convertors (for Office 2004) are probably the most important things for the majority of Mac Office users. If we didn’t need to be compatible with Windows users and networks, we’d probably not be getting MS Office. So why full compatibility isn’t a priority is a mystery.

    That said, I do like Office on the Mac. As a standalone office suite I actually rather like it. But to be fully Windows-environment compatible, it is still lacking.

  128. CraigE ignore these people!

    Sure OpenOffice and NeoOffice may give you a run for your money for those writing term papers, the great American novel and stalker letters to Jessica Alba but let them try to use EndNote or Bookends with their image laden screed and watch as the crappy support that EndNote AND Bookends has for anything other than Word stops them dead in their tracks (don’t talk to me about Mellel you might as well write it Shelby Foote style and use quill pen and ink, it barely exports RTF)!  And don’t worry about Pages or Numbers, Apple has already cut themselves off at the knees by using a weird XML "standard" and not releasing APIs.

    And yes they’re right Office 2008 better have everything the Windows version does and it all better work flawlessly or you’ll be voted off the island just like Roz was.

    See ya January.

  129. Scott Whitlock says:

    Adrian,

    Wait until Word 2008 cuts VBA support (both Bookends AND Endnote rely on this for integration with Word). See how well your statement holds up then.

    How long do you think it will take Endnote to transfer all of its macros over to Applescript? Oh, hold on, Applescript can’t do the things that Endnote needs it to do. Or Bookends for that matter.

    What will you have to say about Word then?

    Oh, and Nisus Writer Pro does RTF (it is its native format) quite well and works with Endnote and Bookends flawlessly.

  130. Jim says:

    With Mac’s making more impact on corporations, that run their business with MS products like Exchange, SharePoint and SQL servers, the MBU should add full compatibility with the Windows family of products. Parallels is an OK work around, but the Mac user community would prefer native mac applications to get their job done.

    Keep up the effort.

  131. Mathew Maher says:

    I’m actually amazed.

    Microsoft hasn’t let me down this time.  They’re actually getting their act together.  Office’08 is under construction and that’s awesome. Although, it’s still missing a few apps in my opinion.

    Okay, so maybe Microsoft doesn’t have their act together 100%.  But, I’m not disappointed that Microsoft has delayed their software again.  Although, Office 08 for Mac had better not hit the Vista-train.

    As far as VBA being removed, I don’t care one way or the other about it.  I mainly use Word for document creation for school.   The only reason I have Office for Mac is for school and work, otherwise I wouldn’t use it.

    I’m happy to see the ‘ribbon’, too often am I disappointed in the countless ‘palettes’ and ‘toolbars’ that float around the Office 04 applications.  I just hope that the ‘ribbon’ is as effective and use-full on the Mac version as it is on the Windows version.

    As other users have said, I’d love to see OneNote ported over for the Mac.  Yes, I know Word has a ‘notebook’ feature, but check this idea out:  OneNote is used in an organization to store generic information on meetings, clients, etc.  Some employees use Macs and so they can’t get the notes from other employees. Or, as a student, a school uses OneNote so students can collect their notes, but a student uses a Mac at home, so it’s pointless for the student save his OneNote files to a thumb-drive, or e-mail them to himself.

    I used to use Windows both at home and at college with an old Windows laptop.  Since my desktop was a better computer than the laptop, I would save my OneNote (or back them up) to my thumb drive, then drag and  drop them onto my desktop in order to keep my notes updated.

    Since I don’t use Access or Visio as much in my industry, I’m not really that concerned about those applications, although having ‘bragging’ rights and seeing them available to the Mac OS X market.

    Although, on a side thought – I’ve often wondered what programing system Microsoft uses to build applications for the Mac.  I would like to assume that they would build in  Coco or Carbon.  Oh another thing I’d like to see: Microsoft to ditch their dictionary for spelling for the Office programs, or at least have the option to not install the MS dictionary and to use the built in OS X spelling dictionary, and soon – grammar checking – coming with OS X "Leopard"

    Alright, enough of my ranting.  I can’t wait to see Office 08 for Mac, and would love to take part in beta testing.

  132. Paul says:

    when will messenger for mac be updated.

    it’s really sickening, i mean come on you guys, it takes you forever, i mean if wanted to release an instant messenger client all new and updated at least make it a little decent,

    it keeps bugging, i can’t close a chat window without messenger closing. comparing the client for mac and the one for windows, u can see a gr8 big difference.

    you guys are so slow, and you offer very little products, there is practically nothing to download from this whole mactopia excuse of a website.

    you guys use macs, are you really satisfied with ur prodcuts.

    update messenger plz!!!

  133. matt evans says:

    I am pretty much with everyone else that has commented. The only feature I really care about is having the equivalent functionality of the Windows versions and their associated technologies. That means a real Exchange client, Sharepoint support, etc. The other most important item is making document exchanging between Windows users 100% accurate.

  134. Gregory Walker says:

    The Microsoft Macintosh Business unit is a joke, I work for a software development company and if we pulled some of the things the Microsoft Mac Business Unit is pulling we would not have any customer period.  To not even have file converters ready for release to your customers give them the ability to open files is ridiculous  

    Especially when other companies are releasing software with the capability.

    How do these guys stay in business, I would be ashamed if I were a developer for this division  where are their professional standards.

  135. Adrian Mattocks says:

    Scott,

    First, I was talking about Mellel not Nisus (for the record, Nisus is a much better product than Mellel).

    Second, Endnote nor Bookends will work if you have an image in the document because it becomes a rtfd "file" which you have to break open in order to get at the text file. Jon at Bookends says he’ll release an update that will work with rtfd (but I prefer Endnote). Besides, I need to be able to give my work to both Win & Mac people (which kills Nisus for me right there).  

    Third, I’ve talked (well, emailed) with the people at Endnote and they were aware that MS was abandoning VB (good riddance IMHO–there’s even talk that VB is going away for good in the next Win Office release–you know how rumors can be though) and will have non-VB integration into Word in the next release of Endnote.  Which should be out around the same time that Service Pack 1 for Office 2008 will be out (plenty of time to see if the new Office is a dog or not).

  136. Gregory Walker says:

    Microsoft will kill Office next year

  137. Nicholas A. Ragusano says:

    One item seems missing in MS Office.  Now that many Mac products integrate iPhoto and other media patches, wouldn’t it be nice if Office did the same.  Imagine clicking on "Insert Image" and up pops the iPhoto library.  This would make it so simple to use that feature.

    Since Office is late anyway, why not take the time between now and December to include that possibility?

  138. Nicholas A. Ragusano says:

    Another comment.  I have used Microsoft Publisher 2000 (both in Windows and on VPC) for many years.  It works flawlessly, is easy to use, and creates very professional looking documents, newsletters, books, etc.

    Since it is considered an Office Integrated program Windows, wouldn’t it be wonderful to have it available for the Mac Office as well.

    Right now I am using Belight’s Swift Publisher.  It works much like Publisher 2000, but is missing several very important features.  Two of these are the ability to print book-style and the other is to include a mail-merge feature.

    Nothing out there can compare to Microsoft Publisher (at least that I have found).

  139. Frumious says:

    Just checking, and it seems pretty clear that true parity with PC Office users will never be. Our 85,000 member non-profit group just went to a system based on MS Access for all Chapter secretaries. Which means I have to run a PC just to access member records. Because Microsoft picks and chooses which parts of Office to port to the Mac. I had hoped the switch to Intel would at last bring true crossover with Office, but obviously not. I have no reason to upgrade beyond Office 10 because I don’t need more memory hogging bells and whistles that do nothing to improve my workflow. If I look at the MS Office for PC features, that’s what I expect for my major investment in the Mac version as well. Until that day comes, I’ll stick with Apple’s products and dance with the one what brung me.

  140. newbiemac says:

    Hello,

    so if after so much time you are still unable to deliver a quality product able to run on intel macs, so please make some efforts to enhance fluidity of office 2004 under Rosetta…

    My experience (and all of my collegues) Office 2004 runs like S…. on intel macs. It barely can handle word documents larger than 30 pages.

    It crashes after inserting some illustrations. And it is so SLOW. One can write a whole sentence before it appears on the screen is that a quaity product? Do you really expect your customers to bare this for 2 years??? Come on, open your eyes and start taking care of us.

    PS look at Adobe they did a great job (their cs2 runs better under rosetta than office and they updated already their whole suite)

  141. Colin says:

    Leopard?

  142. Gavin Shearer has joined MacBU.

  143. Geoff says:

    One of the best things that has really come to fruition during the lifespan of OS 10.4 is the ability (and willingness) for third party developers to hook in to the Apple standard databases and file locations for all sorts of information.

    Any program can be designed to store and access contacts from Address Book, event management in iCal, images from iPhoto, etc. Many of my favorite Mac apps from "small developers" do this brilliantly and it makes a tremendous positive impact on my ability to keep my life and my data organized.

    And so I present the ONE thing that would "buy me back" to Office 2008. You see, I’ve already moved on to NeoOffice (and trialing iWork 08) for actually opening and editing your new Office 2007 documents.

    BUT … if Entourage was the best darn client out there for managing PIM data and e-mail stored in the STANDARD Address Book/iCal/Mail repositories, AND if it could be the bridge to seamlessly importing/exporting that information back and forth across Windows Outlook / Exchange setups … AND if PowerPoint tied into my existing media libraries from the iLife apps … AND if Word could mail-merge from Address Book and use OS 10’s built-in dictionary … then I would return.

    And you know what? As a Mac user (and not as a business user), I’m stoked to see robust AppleScript support in 2008. And let’s see some Growl support. Basically, WORK THE MAC.

    If you can buck up, embrace Apple’s standards that make my life easier (like the grassroots little guys), then you WILL get my upgrade fee when 2008 hits the shelves. If you instead deliver a hollow shell of some PC suite … I’m fine with the available alternatives for editing your file format.

    Cheers 🙂

  144. Scott Whitlock says:

    Adrian,

    Nisus default file format is RTF (which in Windows defaults to open with Word), which can be read by any word processor and is actually a Microsoft file format that is updated with each version of Word to save pretty much anything Word can. If you will look at the converter closely, it takes .docx and converts it into .rtf with no loss of formatting, features, etc.  

    I share my Nisus files without a hitch to Windows users all the time.

    Scott

  145. Snugharbor says:

    Craig,

    Please us the added time to dump (or at least have it optional) Entourage and replace it with Outlook. When Outlook first came out it wasn’t as important as it is now. Why oh why then, this is one element left out in the latest version? Please disregard those who keep harping on having it compatiable with Exchange server. They are missing the point big time…what most of the 95% want is that you bring back Outlook and then those compatibility problems with the Exchange server goes away…dump Entourage replace with Outlook. Those who want the "Apple" experience can buy I-Works and those who want to be compatible with Office want Outlook and not Entourage.

  146. Andy K says:

    I sort of agree with Snugharbor.

    I’d gladly settle for a fully Exchange-conversant version of Entourage. (But I really mean *fully*)

    However, those of us buying and installing MS Office for Mac are doing it because, in this case, it’s the full MS experience we’re after. Or, more accurately, full MS-compatibility. If "good enough" was good enough, there are cheaper or free alternatives. But as they’re not "good enough", the full-price alternative absolutely has to do the job required of it.

    Also, being a techie by nature, I totally "get" that bringing back Outlook would be such a major undertaking that it would be in Office After Next, at the earliest. But that integrating better with Exchange Server would be a whole lot quicker. If not exactly easy.

    But I’m still in agreement about using Office because of needing to fully interact in a Windows environment.

  147. Rodney says:

    MacBU:

    We need a native Exchange client. If it isn’t going to be Entourage, please give us a separate Exchange client to use. ASAP. With total parity that is available for Windows.

    "A-I-D-A. Get out there – you got the prospects coming in. You think they came in to get out of the rain? A guy don’t walk on the lot lest he wants to buy. They’re sitting out there waiting to give you their money. Are you gonna take it? Are you man enough to take it?"

  148. Microsoft のOffice 2007のXML文書形式であるOpen XM…

  149. James Fleming says:

    Can’t wait!  I use XP and Office 2007 at the moment, but to have a gorgeous iMac sat on my desk whilst I RDP to my servers… Ahh, utopia!  

  150. sorry been a busy week but here’s the wheat without the chaff – frankly I was bored by most of the stuff

  151. JT says:

    Is this the last post before release?!?!

  152. Marco says:

    Is there any news about a Msn Messenger update? It’s quite unbeliavable that, up to now, solutions made through a reverse-engeneering process like Adium or aMsn are far superior to the official MS client…

  153. MacManX says:

    I’m still waiting for an answer regarding Messenger for Mac. Will the next version be delayed and shipped as a part of Office 2008 or will it be released earlier? An update is long overdue… I know that the MacBU is waiting for a new webcamtechnology that will be put into Windows Live Messenger – but what’s the status of this project?

  154. El Bahatee says:

    I hope that Entourage will have all features as Outlook on PC, because latest version has a lot of weekness as Exchange client.

  155. Ben says:

    Hi,

    I don’t where else to make a suggestion for Office 2008 or maybe sometime future release. I would like to see Office be able to share contacts with the OS X address book and appointments with iCal etc.

  156. PK says:

    What would be super helpful would be an option to revert to the same keyboard commands for Excel on the Mac as in the PC version. The differences dramatically slow down productivity and seem intentionally obtuse to keep people from switching to the Mac OS.

    Thanks

  157. I would *love* to see OneNote on the mac.

  158. nadyne says:

    Hi Ben – We’re ahead of you!  If you’re using Tiger and Entourage 11.2 or later, you can do this.  In Entourage, go to Preferences -> Sync Services, then select the items that you want to synchronise.

  159. Jake says:

    Here’s a classic problem that I hope is addressed in the new Entourage.  Today I got an e-mail from a client that included, as an attachment, another e-mail that had directions for a project we’re working on.  That attached message was an .msg file from Outlook which Entourage can’t open.  

    Maybe there’s some secret or add-on that will do this.  Anyone know?

  160. Adam says:

    Try fixing MS Messenger while you’re at it. Its frankly a joke. It can’t even log in behind some DSL routers, and all it would need to fix it is to expose the preference to allow to log in over http.

    Thats not even beginning to mention the sheer feature lack between it and the Windows version.

    Could MS been even more transparent about its disdain for the Mac?

  161. Gareth says:

    I’m glad you’re reading the comments Craig. Please do take them on board.

  162. Bill M says:

    Please insure that I can sync my PDA’s and Treo or whatever else with Entourage. I do not like the outdated Palm Desktop.

    I am a die hard Mac fan with a Pro Tower 3GHz quad core, 4GB RAM and 1.75 TB on 4 HD’s. I have several Macs and a few PC’s, two that I have built. I test ran iWork 08 and I like Office better, so I can wait for it to be done right.

    As an off topic, please tell Mr. Gates that a big Mac fan greatly respects what his philanthropy. God bless him. He has become one of my top 10 favorite people. When Leopard arrives, I will dual boot with Vista [for work apps] using Boot Camp [or whatever it’s called at that time].

    Thanks,

    Bill M

    Medford, NJ

  163. CDC says:

    WE NEED MSN MESSENGER FEATURES!!!!!

  164. Ben says:

    Thanks Nadyne, I am afraid I still run Office Xv. So will have to Office 2008 to enjoy the synced contacts and calendar etc. Was going to update to Office 2004 but then Apple went and switched to intel. So thought I would wait for the intel native version.

    Ben.

  165. Lloyd says:

    I’m the CIO for a large global company, excess of 50k staff.  We are moving more and more to MAC OS and the Office products are working pretty well.  THE KEY ITEM:  Entourage compatibility to Exchange, specifically, search deleted items on the server, access to MIMOSA archive information.

  166. Michael says:

    Looking forward to the version.  Great move on having the guts to delay a product to produce something of quality.  Entourage is a great product.  Even with its issues it still is a better and easier way to stay organized than with Outlook.

    I realize this is wishful thinking but it would be great to see a Mac verion of Project.  If that isn’t possible it would be nice to see a plug in between Entourage and Project Server.

  167. MacManX says:

    It’s sad to see the lack of comments from MacBU regarding Messenger. I had high hopes when I read the ‘Messenger: haves and hA/Ve nots’ blog from September last year – but then, silence… a few minor updates, the latest to version 6.0.3, but no major new features.

    I’m pretty sure the project is not dead but I would like to know if it’s put on hold or if it’s a part of the Office:2008

    Please, do not leave us in the dark!

  168. Shane Palmer says:

    I agree with most of the comments about the fact that Entourage lacks some critical Exchange functionality and have posted comments myself on previous blog entries.  However, I only agree up to the point that Entourage needs to sync all of the data types for Entourage: Mail, Calendar, Contacts (AND DISTRIBUTION LISTS), Notes and Tasks along with all of the different flag types and calendar colors that you can do with Outlook 2003 or later.  I do not want an exact copy of Outlook 2003/2007 for the PC.  There are many useless features that it contains, like the Outlook Today view which nobody here uses because it takes so long to generate that view.

    Some things I would definitely like to see it support that would make my life as an IT person much easier would be single sign-on support by making Entourage understand Kerberos tickets.  This would allow you to do single sign-on in companies that have their Macs join Active Directory (which is a high probability if they have an Exchange Server in the first place) or even those that have an Apple OD Server or just any old MIT Kerberos server.

    A natural extension to single sign-on would be truly automatic account configuration with no setup wizard needed just like Outlook on the PC.  Detect the user’s ID based on what they logged into the computer with and do the setup.  There are several good AppleScripts that do something similar to this so there should be no technical reason it couldn’t be built into Entourage.

    I would also like a way to install Entourage in sort of an "Exchange Only" mode where the interface would hide the Folders on My Computer icon and other things including local versions of the Address Book, notes, projects, etc. assuming you first fix the issue of not being able to synchronize Notes, Tasks, and DISTRIBUTION LISTS.  Installing Entourage in this special Exchange Only mode could also trigger the fully automatic account setup that I mentioned in the previous paragraph.

    One last little thing is that I really hate the fact that Entourage has to synch somebody else’s calendar when you want to casually view it.  Many people need to casually look at another persons calendar and don’t want it in their folder list all of the time which is impossible to do with Entourage 2004 since you have to wait five to fifteen minutes before you can even see the current appointments on their calendar.

    And please give us some more information on what you are planning with Entourage 2008 so that we aren’t totally unprepared or disappointed when we have waited a long time for its release and then had a delay tacked onto it.

  169. Geoff Price says:

    MacManX – regarding Messenger, the roadmap outlined by Mary in that post from last year is still correct, and progress has been made. We still expect you’ll see A/V support working with (what is now called) Office Communication Server first, and then on the free public WL service, as a result of service update schedules.

  170. John Carr says:

    Typical of Microsoft, has anyone forgotten the Vista "quality slips" I know I haven’t it’s a shame that Microsoft has us all by the short and curlies with their Office chock hold. If you haven’t already downloaded Apple’s iWork ’08 I would suggest it, it even opens Office XML files…so you don’t have to hunt down Microsoft’s obscure XML converter

    What a disappointment but not unexpected.

  171. ChrisPhilips says:

    BREAK IT UP! PLEASE!

    I have a staff of creatives who work with Indesign and Quark and Dreamweaver and absolutely do not need Word or Excel or Powerpoint but MUST be able to use Entourage with our Exchange Server. Entourage v.X was an abomination, and forcing me to buy six full copies of Office 2004 (with a version of Entourage that actually works) added insult to injury.

    Please offer separate components like you used to. I’d be willing to pay a premium (Say half the cost of Office) for JUST entourage- it would still save me money.

  172. Yorks says:

    It’s incredible to read this many people just taking a delay with.."oh well.. only a few months to go".

    Yes quality is definetly something we want on the product but c’mon!! can you manage a project or what!? I’m already forecasting a lot of bugs on your product and subsequent releases of "patches". Is quality here the real issue?

  173. Lincoln says:

    Dearest Microsoft and/or the Mac BU (Do you guys work anymore or has the whole "solutions" thing gotten old?), I’m so utterly fed up with your shatty company and company policy (licensing, being big brother, etc.) I’m done. You’ve lost me. I’ve recently been playing with iWork 08, and it is suprisingly really efficient. So, Mac fans all over the world, let’s quit letting the BU write all this BS anymore. You can see right through the blog, so stop being so politically correct. BU, if you’re there at all, how about you guys own up, and quit beating around the fucking bush.

  174. 7月29日,微软的 Mac Team Blog 上发布了一篇 帖子 ,宣布 ArtofOffice 正式上线。这是一个专为Mac用户准备的网站,用户可以上传用Office制作的各类艺术作品,和其他用户相互分享、讨论,并对作品进行评价和评论。除了根据作品所用的Office程序(Word、Excel、Powerpoing)和创作者来对作品进行分类,网站还加入了Tag和搜索的功能。 这个 和 这个 是我找到的两个中文内容的Word作品。

  175. Kevin says:

    Yet another desperate Exchange support plea. I support 150 Mac Office users and this is the MOST important need. I’ll be specific with my requests:

    1) MAPI support. We don’t want the constant syncing and slowness of WEBDAV. There are also possible auditing and government record-keeping compliance issues with caching of copies of email. Local sync should be optional.

    2) Kerberos support or the ability auto-login from the AD machine log in credentials.

    3) Ability to book resources in meeting requests.

    4) Able to open, read and write to PST files (not just import)

    5) Compose complex HTML messages. (we use a third-party script now)

    6) Able to detect changes in the Exchange environment, such as a mailbox move or public server change. These are hard set at profile creation in Entourage, and break if changes are made on the back end. Somehow Outlook can pick these changes up automatically. Heck, Outlook 2001 on the Mac usually could also (a true MAPI client.)

    7) I’ll second Shane’s suggestions above for auto-account creation from the log in, and ability to hide "Folders on my computer."

    Please, please give us a real Exchange client equivalent to Outlook. I’ve been making my requests to every Microsoft rep at trade show for years, and they typically say "Yea, Yea, This is what we hear the most."

  176. Planet DPS says:

    The release date for Microsoft's new office suite for the Mac has been pushed back to December 2007….

  177. Neil Daniels says:

    Ever since I got my Mac about 2 years ago, I never touched Word or anything in the Mac Office suite. I would use it here and there. I fell in love with Pages and Keynote (recently with Numbers).

    Here is your guys’ problems: you have to limit yourself to things that work with Windows Office, and you can’t make an interface that is Mac-like.

    PowerPoint, either on the Mac or Windows, sucks. When you compare it to Keynote, the difference is black and white. I refuse to do anything in PowerPoint.

    Word is fine for just typing. Doing any page layout sucks, along with Publisher for Windows. The only thing that I use Word for, instead of Pages, is actually spell/grammar checking. iWork ’08 now has some grammar checking. However the checking that is in Word is far better… however, you guys don’t even make that, you license it from someone else. Besides proof-reading, Word is one level above TextEdit.

    Excel, is just a bunch of boxes, and really hard to use graphs. Pre-made ledger sheets are not going to  get me to buy Office 08.

    You guys should really change your focus from duplicating Windows Office for the Mac (which you do a horrible job, if that was the goal). Perhaps you should just start from scratch and actually make a Mac app (you can start by getting rid of roll overs when hover over a button–sure, that is what Windows is like, Office for Mac is one of the only applications that has button rollovers on a Mac (besides legacy carbonized apps such as Photoshop).

  178. Anthony says:

    I work with both Windows and Mac, and definatly perfer Macintosh. I am wondering if the new version of Entourage will import Office 2007 .pst files cause i would like to get away from Windows as much as possible.

  179. Luther says:

    I am a new MBP user from an IBM Thinkpad.  The transition is okay and if Bootcamp supported dual monitors (nvidia baby) then I would be right.  The other thing though is the old Office 2004 version.  I can make due but am really hoping for a souped up version for Mac.  Will it have the ribbon (I love that new interface)?  Is there a chance to do some Beta testing like MS gave with Office 2007?  That certainly helped my transition enormously.

    Thanks, and don’t take all the flames on this blog personally.  I know you guys are working your butts off.

  180. Dave Mancuso says:

    Wow. I didn’t read all 177 comments, but people always seem to expect the world. If this is what it takes to get a more solid release, well, I’ll live with it. My one hope is that E-rage will sync tasks with Exchange, but honestly, do people always have to be this way about software products?

    The MBU gets a ton of abuse for being people who are working to make solid products for the Mac. Even if you hate Microsoft, these aren’t the people to beat up. They’re on our side, for Pete’s sake.

    Sorry, just my opinion.

  181. MacManX says:

    Thanks Geoff for your reply!

    Yes, there is a roadmap regarding the syncronization with LCS and WLM technologies, but no info on when this might occur, hence my curiosity.

    It would be nice to know how things are going since it’s been a year since the above mentioned post. You mention that ‘progress has been made’ so I’m keeping my hopes up! 🙂

  182. Bababooey says:

    Typo: Second paragraph, seventeen words in. ‘know’ should be ‘now’.

  183. RwD says:

    As are most everyone else:

    * I am disappointed that Office 2008 will be delayed.

    * I hope that Microsoft will release a high quality product, when it does ship.

    * I hope that Microsoft will offer feature parity with Office 2007, rather than concentrate on frills that don’t help my business use of the product.

    * I hope that Microsoft will expand the Office 2008 suite to include other products from the Office 2007 Pro suite (especially Project), but don’t expect that they will.

    Microsoft and the Mac user community will continue to work together, however strained the relationship, because Word and Excel are the tools of choice for business in America.

    Mac users need those tools, because they are a strong part of the business community that helped MIcrosoft build Word and Excel into the successes they are today. Microsoft has, in fact, built a very successful, diverse business on both Windows and Mac platforms.

    It is disappointing that MIcrosoft appears to neglect the portion of their business (Mac) that introduced the core elements of Office (the "GUI" versions of Word and Excel came out first on the Mac). It is further disappointing when you consider that Microsoft Office has a huge market share in the Mac market (the last numbers I saw were over 90%).

    I would like to see MIcrosoft sharpen its Mac product line again and really blow us away with Office 2008. Please, show us that you’ve still got it.

  184. Keep an eye on Mac Mojo for sneak peeks at new Office 2008 features including Entourage 2008. In his Office 2008 for Mac Sneak Peek Kick-Off Craig Eisler, MacBU General Manager, announces a commitment to Entourage in the enterprise and begins with a look

  185. Pattes says:

    Hello !

    I’m very inresting about Office 2008 for mac !

    A question : Could we have the video, sound and games with Live Messenger 2008 for mac ???

  186. PS says:

    MS are clever. The price for Office for Mac is about the same as the price of Office for PC and Windows/Vista together, so they get the same revenue regardless of platform. And even when delivering the software one year later.

    Parallels Desktop can be an option, but that turns the Mac into a white PC, i.e with a slow, unstable, virus prone Windows/Vista.

    Hopefully web based services will end the empire’s domination one day, MS is simply not up to it.

  187. Henry says:

    I strongly agree with an earlier comment:

    “I just want to be able to read and respond to my email, create and respond to invites, etc. like a normal Windows users….but on my Mac!”

    Anything else must be a consious strategy against Mac, that surely must hit back eventually.

    Please MS – don’t try to position Mac as the choice for freelancers and small businesses only – it is not the case.

  188. Lorne Tapp-Cowan says:

    Not surprisng, considering how long it has taken for a native version of Office: Mac. I quit using office 2k4 last november when i migrated to an intel based mac because quite frankly, performance under rosetta is bad. very bad. the MBU has known about the transition to intel from apple probably since before it was officially announced to the public, and yet it has taken YEARS to even have a release date for a native product. Its unnacceptable.

  189. http://fakesteveballmer.blogspot.com

    I love keeping a couple of pet Macfanboys arround just for comedic relief. You see they think they are sooo friggin smart, tech-aware, neuvo-now, wit-it, ….. But what they really are is just pets! I refer to that group of MacDweebs in MacBU, lol, MacBU, gimme a break. We pay them half-scale but they still show up smiling every morning. Real MS employees shun them, they don’t get it. We leave them out of key meetings, company BBQ’s, parties, strategy sessions, 401k plans, dental (obviously). But they still say, “it’s a wonderful place to work”, lol, they really crack me up. I have been testing these iTards limits for years, but they won’t quit! Very entertaining.

    The latest thing I did was to tell Craig Eisler (their “leader”) to delay Mac Office 2008 a few months, he just smiled and said “yassa missa Ballmass”, then I said “put out a memo where you take credit for the delay”, he was only too happy to. I love having these people arround! What next?

  190. Boaz says:

    I’m glag the user experience is enhanced but what about supporting Right-To-Left (RTL) languages like Hebrew, Arabic, etc.?

    Should this important feature stay only for Windows users?

  191. Christopher says:

    Still nothing, not a single word in any direction, from Mac BU on RTL Unicode support?

    I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again: without this feature, I won’t–no, I CAN’T–use Office ’08 effectively. This support is *built into* Mac OS X, and works reasonably well in all iWork and iLife apps, third-party apps like Mellel and Nisus, and the Finder itself … but what about Office ’08? Even Office ’04 has a few niceties that I’d like to use … but RTL support is a *necessity.*

  192. ComputerWorld has a rather good showdown of email clients on Mac OS X. The best breakdown of features I’ve seen on the Mac side in some time. That said, I think they were slightly unfair to Thunderbird. For example, Thunderbird does have cale..

  193. ComputerWorld has a rather good showdown of email clients on Mac OS X. The best breakdown of features I’ve seen on the Mac side in some time. That said, I think they were slightly unfair to Thunderbird. For example, Thunderbird does have cale..

  194. Before I left for TechEd Barcelona I picked up a new MacBook Pro . I was headed to Europe for 3 weeks

  195. Rob Howard says:

    Before I left for TechEd Barcelona I picked up a new MacBook Pro . I was headed to Europe for 3 weeks

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