I have made no secret over the last few years that while there are times I am forced to use Microsoft Office products on my Mac, it’s definitely not my first choice. For everyday writing, I tend to lean more towards Pages, or even Text Edit if I don’t need to worry about fancy layouts or graphics. I just want to get things done, and for years, Microsoft Word simply presented too many inconsistencies and became a resource hog I could do without.
All that being said, I cannot help but be somewhat impressed with some of the new features coming to Office 2011 for Mac. The below video highlights what I am talking about.
There are some who continue to dislike anything Microsoft does, and those are usually people who were Apple/Macintosh fans from the 1990s. Back then, it seemed that the entire world had left the Mac for Windows, and those of us left holding the torch knew what a mistake that was. The Mac, even with some of the silly business decisions Apple was making at the time, was still the best operating system. We knew what how much better software ran on a Mac, how much more usable the machines were and how great the small developers were on the Mac, making inexpensive software that many times were much better than expensive PC software. And so, even to this day, there are some who see Microsoft as the antithesis of Apple.
Microsoft has done some very impressive things the last few years, but for Mac users, the most important has been keeping Microsoft Office on par (for the most part) with the Windows equivalent. There are, honestly, too many Mac users who use a Windows machine at work, and without the Office for Mac software, would have been forced to buy a Windows PC for home. (Or to run Windows virtually or via BootCamp.)
The next version of Office, the 2011 edition, is due out in October, and while I won’t be standing in line to get a copy, I do appreciate the effort and enthusiasm the Mac Business Unit at Microsoft has shown. They are blogging often about the product, are true Macintosh fans, and really want the Mac community to really like their product. And I, for one, am willing to give them yet another chance to make me a believer.
UPDATE 9/17/10 by OWC Grant
Good news…when you buy the OWC retail version of Microsoft Office 2008 which starts from $129.99, you become eligible for a FREE upgrade to the latest and greatest 2011 version! Just follow these four easy steps from Microsoft and make sure you purchase Office 2008 from OWC by November 30, 2010. That’s an early holiday season “door buster” deal for ya!