Microsoft Office

Version: 13.1.2 || Release Date: 2012-01-22 || License: Freeware App Owner: joymlarson

Office for Mac 2008 may be the best pick for business users, but most people can get by with less costly alternatives.

After a series of delays, Microsoft plans to release Office for Mac 2008 to brick-and-mortar and online stores on January 15, making this the first update in nearly four years.

Office for Mac includes Word, Excel for spreadsheets, PowerPoint for presentations and Entourage for e-mail and time management. There's no Microsoft Access database application for the Mac, although Filemaker's upcoming release of Bento offers Mac users a new choice.

Unlike Microsoft Office 2007, the interface changes don't look radically foreign next to the 2004 edition. That's good news for anyone who doesn't want to relearn the locations of common functions. The 2007 applications for Windows arrange functions within tabs, while the 2008 Mac software largely clusters functions within the same drop-down menus including File, Edit, and View.

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