Microsoft Locks Down Office.com, Likely for Office 2010
Microsoft has secured the Office.com URL, which will presumably become the platform for
its upcoming Microsoft Office 2010.
A quick search on Whois.net reveals that Microsoft Corporation
was indeed registered as Domain Administrator of office.com as of Aug. 4. The registration expires on April 19, 2019.
According to TechCrunch, the Office.com domain name was
previously owned by an anonymous U.S. resident and operated by ContactOffice, a Belgian startup that
offers virtual office software. Microsoft has traditionally used office.microsoft.com as its Office URL.
"As of Friday, July 31, 2009, Office.com will no longer be
available so please be sure to bookmark this URL for future use," reads a
message currently posted on the Office.com Website. "Also, if you use POP or
IMAP with Office.com you will need to change your settings to
pop.contactoffice.net and imap.contactoffice.net respectively."
Although Microsoft has declined to give details about the URL
acquisition, one can presume that they offered the site's previous owner the
equivalent of a dump-truck filled with cash; a single-word URL that reflects on
one of the major product lines of the world's largest software corporation would
doubtlessly be worth a not-so-small fortune.
In a departure from previous versions of Office, Microsoft
Office 2010 will be launched as a free online service for subscribers of
Microsoft Live. The cloud-based versions of OneNote, Excel, Word and
PowerPoint will lack some of the features available in the full versions.
In addition to the cloud-based version, Microsoft also plans
on offering Office 2010 as both a hosted subscription service and an on-premises
application, for businesses uncomfortable with porting their proprietary
information entirely on the cloud. However, even versions of Office 2010 running
as an on-premises application will be accessed through the
Office 2010 constitutes part of Microsoft's massive software
refresh, joining Windows 7, Windows Mobile 6.5 and Windows Server 2008 as part
of a new product line that the company hopes will revive its fortunes after a
quarter of declining revenues.
The Office 2010 versions of Word, PowerPoint and OneNote will introduce new collaboration elements, allowing users to see what others in their company have done within a document and avoid making conflicting changes. The Web-based version of the productivity suite will also be more accessible through mobile devices, Microsoft claims.