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by Mike Zazaian September 8, 2006 - 11:56am, 4 Comments

Office 2007 to Include PDF

Microsoft’s upcoming version of it’s productivity suite juggernaut can be upgraded to produce files in Adobe Acrobat’s .PDF format.

Initially, the thought was that it would be a useful feature to simply integrate the ability to save any Office 2007 file as a readable, distributable Adobe Acrobat format .PDF file. Adobe, however, took great exception to this idea, as it likely makes a great deal of revenue off of a program that primarily does only that, the Adobe Acrobat Professional series. As such, after some heavy negotiations, Microsoft finally decided to remove the feature from 2007, likely because it would just be too useful for consumers. InformationWeek had this to say about the decision:

Some analysts speculated that Microsoft’s surrender — unusual for the Redmond, Wash. developer — was driven by worries of possible antitrust action by the federal government if Microsoft moved on Adobe’s turf. XPS (XML Paper Specification) is a Microsoft creation intended to compete with PDF in the electronic document market.

Microsoft has said that .PDF functionality will be available as an “add-on,” likely to cost more that its worth, but it will not be integrated into the base Office 2007 suite.

Bringing some consolation is Microsoft’s new file format .XPS, or XML Paper Specification, Microsoft’s new electronic paper format for exchanging documents in their final forms.  The feature will allow export from Office 2007 to any platform because of its open-ended XML base, making .XPS files completely standardized across platforms.  I applaud Microsoft for this one, as Office 2007 users can share these documents with anybody running OSX or any Linux platform without having to buy, or mimic Microsoft Office functionality.

[via DailyTech]