Microsoft on Tuesday revealed pricing for the four versions of Office 2010 it plans to sell in the U.S. and added a new SKU to the mix that's tailored to the needs of academia.
The new Office Professional Academic 2010 edition comes with Outlook and will sell for just $99, although it's available only to students and teachers and will be sold only through authorized academic resellers. This version also comes with the 2010 versions of Word, Excel, PowerPoint, OneNote, Publisher and Access.
By way of comparison, Office Professional, which contains the same lineup of applications, will sell for $499 for the full packaged product, and $349 if purchased using a product key card.
Office Home And Business, which contains everything but Publisher and Access, will sell for $279 (full packaged product) and $199 (product key card). Office Home And Student, which includes Word, Excel, Powerpoint and OneNote, is priced at $149 (full packaged product) and $119 (product key card).
Microsoft is also making the case that Office 2010 adoption is proceeding more quickly than Office 2007 did.
Since launching the public beta of Office 2010 in November, more than two million people have downloaded the software, and 9 out of 10 feel that the Office 2010 beta is better than the productivity suite they're currently using, Rachel Bondi, general manager of the Microsoft Office group, said in a blog post.
Microsoft is also planning to offer three additional Office 2010 SKUs to volume licensing customers. Office 2010 Professional Plus is targeted to enterprises and includes OneNote and SharePoint Workspace, while Office 2010 Standard includes Word, PowerPoint, Excel, OneNote, Outlook and Publisher.
Microsoft will also offer Office Starter 2010, a free version with basic Word and Excel document viewing and editing functions. The idea is to expose new PC buyers to Office 2010 as soon as they turn on their machines, and interested users will be able to buy a product key card from one of Microsoft's retail partners and upgrade to one of the three full versions.