Microsoft Announces Office 2000; Key Customers Get First Look at Next Version of Office

NEW YORK, June 17, 1998 — Last night at the PC Expo Tradeshow, Microsoft Corp. previewed Microsoft® Office 2000 to more than 500 key customers and outlined an aggressive plan to drive early customer involvement. Beta 1 of Office 2000 is scheduled to be released in July to more than 20,000 customers and solution providers, representing more than a tenfold increase over previous early beta programs, to provide customers with an expanded opportunity to prepare for Office 2000. Microsoft previewed new Web-based knowledge management functionality in Office 2000, which will allow customers to use the Web to collaborate and share information, as well as access and analyze vital business information to drive better decisions. Microsoft also outlined key investments in Office 2000 that are designed to address key customer issues relating to the cost of deploying and managing Office software.

“Office 2000 is being designed to help customers turn information into an asset. Office 2000 will break existing barriers, making information easy to find, view and secure, by extending Office to the Web,”
said Jon DeVaan, vice president, desktop applications division at Microsoft.
“Since Office has become so critical to our customers, we’re planning a broad first beta so they can test Office 2000 in their existing environments.”

Web-Based Knowledge Management

Web-enabled collaboration and information sharing in Office 2000 will make the Web work for Office customers by overcoming many of the current barriers to using the Web. The incorporation of HTML as a companion file format and seamless Web posting through a familiar
“Save As…”
dialog box will allow everyday users of Office to be contributors to the Web. Browser-based Office Web Discussions will allow customers to collaborate right inside a Web page as they read and browse, making the practice of giving feedback and sharing ideas simple.

Rich Web-based analysis tools will enable better decision-making for customers, whether they are analyzing data from Microsoft Excel or from a large corporate database. Integrated Web solutions enabled by Office Web Components will offer organizations a simple way to create and publish interactive data so customers can have access to and manipulate key business data inside their browser.

Lower Ownership Costs, Improved Ease of Use

New flexible installation options, full roaming support and a breakthrough global architecture will allow Office 2000 customers to realize savings in the cost of deploying, supporting and administering Office software. Install-on-demand technology will allow customers to install only the features they need, and run selected Office components from the server.

In response to customer concerns to make cross-version document sharing as simple as possible, Office 2000 file formats will remain unchanged from those in Office 97, with the exception of Microsoft Access, which is changing to incorporate Unicode support. Office 2000 will be the first truly global desktop applications suite and will make it simpler for organizations

to deploy Office by using a single underlying product
when deploying internationally. An organization will be able to roll out and support one consistent version of Office 2000 around the globe, while at the same time allowing their users to work in their native language.

Office 2000 is being designed to help customers get better results by turning their information into more of an asset. Office 2000 is the desktop suite that will make the Web work for its users, streamlining the process of working with people and information to provide better results.

Founded in 1975, Microsoft (Nasdaq
) is the worldwide leader in software for personal computers. The company offers a wide range of products and services for business and personal use, each designed with the mission of making it easier and more enjoyable for people to take advantage of the full power of personal computing every day.

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