Feeds

Office 2010 tech preview: Expect the expected

And some web apps (eventually)

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

Video inserts

Another theme is multimedia support. You can insert videos in PowerPoint and trim and format them with built-in tools. PowerPoint also gains new transition and animation effects, along with bitmap effects such as artistic filters and control over colour saturation and tone.

Trim video in PowerPoint 2010

Trim and format video in PowerPoint 2010

The web apps were not in the preview we received, since they are dependent on SharePoint or SharePoint Services 2010, but video presentations suggest they offer high-quality rendering and editing. There is a collaboration aspect, since more than one person can work on a web document simultaneously. Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and OneNote are supported, with Silverlight used on the client where available and dropping down to HTML where necessary.

Web version of Excel

Applications such as Excel can be accessed online via a browser

Supported browsers are IE, Firefox and Safari, or Windows Mobile. Since this is SharePoint, you can also open a web document in the full Office application and save it back in a seamless manner. Businesses will either host web apps on their own servers or via a hosting provider, which could be Microsoft itself. Individuals will get this feature via Windows Live, probably for free. They look great from the little we have seen so far.

Microsoft Groove, a relatively little-used collaboration product, is now renamed SharePoint Workspace and can be used to replicate SharePoint sites locally, in addition to its existing peer-to-peer workspace support. This enables offline support for SharePoint, with synchronisation back to the server when available. Outlook has not changed much in the preview, though it has gained a new kind of macro called Quick Steps, as well as the ribbon UI already mentioned.

Speaking of macros, the old Visual Basic for Applications continues to live in Office, which will be reassuring to those with existing VBA solutions. Word has a new Navigation Pane, an enhanced version of the existing Document Map, which supports search and preview as well as once-click navigation to specific headings.

It is hard to get excited about Office 2010, simply because this is the umpteenth version and its core features are little changed. That said, 64-bit support will be great for those who need it, while the forthcoming web apps are a significant new twist in the long Office story. ®

Boost IT visibility and business value

More from The Register

next story
Why has the web gone to hell? Market chaos and HUMAN NATURE
Tim Berners-Lee isn't happy, but we should be
Microsoft boots 1,500 dodgy apps from the Windows Store
DEVELOPERS! DEVELOPERS! DEVELOPERS! Naughty, misleading developers!
'Stop dissing Google or quit': OK, I quit, says Code Club co-founder
And now a message from our sponsors: 'STFU or else'
Apple promises to lift Curse of the Drained iPhone 5 Battery
Have you tried turning it off and...? Never mind, here's a replacement
Mozilla's 'Tiles' ads debut in new Firefox nightlies
You can try turning them off and on again
Linux turns 23 and Linus Torvalds celebrates as only he can
No, not with swearing, but by controlling the release cycle
Scratched PC-dispatch patch patched, hatched in batch rematch
Windows security update fixed after triggering blue screens (and screams) of death
prev story

Whitepapers

Top 10 endpoint backup mistakes
Avoid the ten endpoint backup mistakes to ensure that your critical corporate data is protected and end user productivity is improved.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Backing up distributed data
Eliminating the redundant use of bandwidth and storage capacity and application consolidation in the modern data center.
The essential guide to IT transformation
ServiceNow discusses three IT transformations that can help CIOs automate IT services to transform IT and the enterprise
Next gen security for virtualised datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.