[sc:software-category ]Microsoft has release a consumer preview of Office 2012, with the Office 365 label, what exactly does that mean?
First off is the most obvious requirement for a Microsoft Account to install Office on your PC. This is a little troubling as I really don’t want Microsoft (or anyone else for that matter) to have any more information about me then they actually need to have. I decided to take a look any why and I have to admit the install and integration was very slick.
The new, more Metro look of Office 2013 is a little jarring at first, but it works quite well once the initial shock has worn off.
With this version of Office there is no way to remove the online connectivity, though you can work offline of course. SkyDrive is now the default save location and that rubs me the wrong way. Why should I eat up bandwidth to store files on a remote server when I have terabytes of hard disk space sitting locally? I know most non-technical people probably won’t even give it a second thought but its a choice Microsoft made that I just don’t like.
In the initial flurry of news releases they were all focused on this new Office 365 version of the preview, but Technet now has a non-365 version up for download. I uninstalled the 365 version and installed the Pro Plus version to see how they handled the Microsoft Account integration.
unfortunately it looks like the preview doesn’t remove all its settings so it picked up my account from the 365 install. I’ll have to try installing it again on a clean system.
I don’t belive for a moment that Microsoft will force all Office 2013 users to have a Microsoft Account, after all any large company would never let software with that kind of requirement to be installed on their network.
I can see why MS has gone in this direction, to complete against the purely web-based suites, I just hope they don’t throw the baby out with the bath water in their rush for the cloud.