Office 2010 hits public beta

Office 2010

Microsoft has made the beta for Office 2010 available to the rest of us, after opening it up to developers earlier this week.

The download version of Office is the Professional Plus version, which will keep working until next October. It includes Word, Excel, Outlook and PowerPoint, as well as Access and One Note.

It's not just Office that's moving into public beta, either. Microsoft also unveiled public betas for SharePoint Server 2010, Project 2010, Visio 2010, and Office Mobile 2010 - as well as Office Web Apps for businesses.

"We are hoping to have millions of people download and test the products, as we depend on that feedback to shape the final product," said Kurt DelBene, senior vice president of the Office Business Productivity Group at Microsoft, in a statement.

Getting social

Microsoft also detailed a few new features for Office 2010, including Outlook Social Connector, which integrates collaboration and social networking feeds into the email client.

Microsoft released the SDK so developers can create connectors, and said LinkedIn would release a connector early next year.

"Essentially, with this new capability, people can collaborate and work better together. The Outlook experience customers are familiar with and use on a daily basis becomes the hub of their social networking experience," he said.

"The Outlook Social Connector will enable both business and social networking by integrating with SharePoint 2010 at beta and Windows Live at launch," DelBene added.

Want to know more about Office 2010? Read on for our review of the Office 2010 beta and our cheatsheet for all you need to know.