Microsoft said Monday that it was expecting to release Office for Mac 2011 in October, while at the same time cutting the price as much as 50 percent to bring pricing in line with its Windows counterparts. Two versions of the software will be made available, one directed at academics and the other for business.
Microsoft Office for Mac Home and Student 2011 will include World, Excel, Powerpoint, and Microsoft’s instant messaging application for Mac OS X. The business version will include all of the above applications plus Outlook, which will replace Entourage as Office’s e-mail client on the Mac.
Pricing for the student version ill be $119 for a single license, and $149 for a family license which allows for installation on up to three machines. This compares to a single license price of $149 for Office 2008. For Office for Mac Home and Business 2011, a single license is now $199, down from $399, and a family license $279.
At any time, a user will be able to upgrade from the Student to Business version using online upgrade functionality, Microsoft said.
A $99 version of the business suite would also be made available, but only to those in higher-education. Proof of employment or enrollment in an academic institution would likely be required to take advantage of the discount.
Those who purchase Office for Mac 2008 after Monday will be eligible to upgrade to the new version at no cost, Microsoft said. To receive the free upgrade, the purchaser must register at Microsoft’s website.