The Office suite of productivity applications, alongside the Windows operating system, is undoubtedly the most important software product that comes out of Redmond.
In many cases, it is the reason why some people and companies choose Microsoft products like Surface tablets and Windows Phones. No surprises then that not only has the company launched Office 365 and Office Online, but is also hard at work at bringing Office to competing mobile platforms.
Through it all, the company is also developing the next full version of Office for Windows.
Office 16 is said to be the name of this next version of Office, and according to this report by Mary Jo Foley, it could arrive by the end of the year as the company wants to stick to its schedule.
In the words of Office Corporate Vice President Jeffrey Teper:
“We will continue with our on-premises releases of both SharePoint Server and Exchange Server on our traditional 2-3 year release cadence.”
Not all that much to go by, as far as hints go, really.
But it would not be a surprise seeing a new version of Office released to coincide with the launch of Windows 9 in late 2014, maybe even early 2015. If it is in development, it ought to be out in time.
Obviously, Microsoft is not known to comment on reports like these, so file this as a rumor, albeit of the credible and sound variety. The big question is what new features will be part of this new version?
And will we finally see some completely touch optimized Metro Office applications?