App-tastic: It’s Office 2013 – #OfficePreview

For those living under a rock the last couple of weeks: Microsoft is on a spree!!!!! (btw that must have been quite a rock J) And they are working down the list. Having started with Windows 8 last year, the recent announcements on Windows Azure Spring Release, Windows Phone 8 and the most wanted piece of hardware at this moment (Microsoft Surface), the guys from Redmond have almost completed the circle. Yesterday Microsoft announced with great bravoure what they state to be “THE LARGEST RELEASE OF OFFICE. EVER!” (I’m getting into this CAPS thing already J) .

I must say it was quite a show and I’m guessing at least 70 % of the audience was doing what is was doing: installing the goods J. And I must say, it was quite the experience.

For installing the bits you should go to http://office.com/preview

Now when willing to install it you need to make sure to make the correct choices from the start (although you can easily go over it afterwards again). The offer on the main page gives you a direct link to the installer of the Office 365 Home Premium Preview giving you right of use on the following:

A personalized experience
on up to 5 household PCs or tablets.
Access to your applications, documents, and settings on Internet-connected PCs The applications you trust: Word, PowerPoint, Excel, Outlook, OneNote, Publisher, and Access

But being a real fan of Lync, which seems missing in this install, I choose not to go for this one. So I went for the Office 365 Enterprise which installs additional tools :

on top of all the other tools you get the additional InfoPath Tools and the Lync Client.

The installation is very animated and not quite what we used to know, but perhaps that could have had to do with having already installed Office 2010 on my machine (Win 8).

Here’s a quick overview:

All is in the same METRO Style and very sleek. It even contains a movie during the setup, with an overview of what you can do. But the most impressive part is that it install in a time frame which unbelievalbly fast! And all that from online!! I guess the file copy features in Windows 8 do work ;-). Off to the use:

the restyled startup screen is simple sleek and chique J.
New Features I like : The Improved Presenter view in PowerPoint
Excel Flash Fill: type twice in a formatted table and hop: instant column fill J!
Subtle Outlook change: the unread tab in the item list (so WP7.5 !! Me Likes J):

Still playing with it all (didn’t have much time yet), so there’s going to be more in the upcoming weeks. One thing did surprise me though: standard there were no Office Apps, but … there’s already an OneNote MX available in the Windows Store and next up will be the Lync Client (the one I’m most looking forward to).

To wrap up: I believe Microsoft has created the ultimate “Deadly Hallows” to bring the Ava Kadavra to the iPad era: I said it before and I say it again: Sorry Apple but Microsoft created the ultimate Trio with Windows 8, Surface and Office. 2013will be the year the iPad have to do better than just deliver new hardware “tweaks”.

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SkyDrive , My Fav!!

As of today the business model of Skydrive changes. The most significant change is the paying options and the downgrade from the comfortable 25Gb to 7Gb online storage. What did you just say … downgrade? That’s right, downgrade. But not to fear, you can still regain your 25Gb , even for free. The reason for the downgrade  is that Microsoft  probably is “hunting down” static accounts to regain online storage and to optimize current storage soltions. But that’s just a hunch. so feel free to comment on that.

But more important how can one regain his/her storage. Well fairly easy, but it seems that it doesn’t apply for all accounts, so don’t shoot me if this doens’t apply to your account …

  1. log in to http://skydrive.live.com
  2. on the “home page” you get an option for returning happy customers to get a free upgrade (underneath the add files toolbar)
  3. once selected you’ll get underneath screen, were you can easily select a free upgrade to 25Gb and even upgrades to the paying options for those who want extra storage