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  • mevans336 - Friday, February 01, 2013 - link

    What is it in? Reply
  • VivekGowri - Friday, February 01, 2013 - link

    Mechanical Engineering. Already graduated actually, diploma is in the mail :) Reply
  • mevans336 - Friday, February 01, 2013 - link

    Awesome, congratulations! What school? Reply
  • Samus - Saturday, February 02, 2013 - link

    All my buddies (and myself) have ME degrees (I don't have a masters) and they have vast flexibility with employment. I've had jobs ranging from Ford to IT consulting. I did go back to school for an associates in EE, but its funny that none of us any longer have a typical ME job. One of us is a truck driver, lol! Reply
  • p05esto - Friday, February 01, 2013 - link

    I really dislike the UI and graphical style of this and Win8. It's 2013 and the interface so totally boring, no color, no shading, no shadows, doesn't pop or anything. Why 1 color icons, can't we make things look nicer than this? Maybe it's a small thing, but it all looks cheap and uninspired, so cold and boring. No thanks to the Modern UI. Reply
  • B3an - Friday, February 01, 2013 - link

    Yeah exactly, it's 2013. Not 2005.

    If you like dated graphic design, things like gradients, shadows, shiny icons, gloss, material emulation and pointless rounded corners then either go back to 2005 of use iOS or OSX.

    Speaking as a designer i can safely say that pretty much all modern design is heading this way. Including site designs. Whenever you see a new design of a major site it's nearly always more Metro-ish looking. Thats because it's better, it's cleaner, it's more efficient, it focuses more on content not pointless chrome, it cuts out then needless crap and most people prefer it.
  • Wall Street - Friday, February 01, 2013 - link

    But the UI is horrible. IT doesn't indicate what is clickable or not and has a poor use of white space. The best interfaces have a good user experience and build the aesthetic around that. Metro clearly had the aesthetic laid out before they made the interface. Reply
  • Murloc - Friday, February 01, 2013 - link

    apart for the removal of gradients and juicy looking 3D icons, it's very similar to 2010.
    In 2010 you can see what is not clickable because it's greyed out. I guess it's the same in 2013.
    The icon style changed but other than that there's really no difference in looks.
  • Murloc - Friday, February 01, 2013 - link

    look at the copy button in the first image of the look and feel page: it's greyed out. Reply
  • Flunk - Friday, February 01, 2013 - link

    Actually, it's very easy to tell what's clickable. Everything that's not the background color is clickable.

    Actually the Windows 8 UI uses far more color than the old interface did and it uses them for informative purposes, not just graphical bling. It's content over all else and functionally it's much better than the old 1990's style of psudo 3D everywhere which basically only tells you what you can and cannot click.
  • Wolfpup - Thursday, March 07, 2013 - link

    Right. Just because somethings the "in" thing to do doesn't mean it makes sense. We have shadows and the like FOR A REASON. It wasn't random, it's to give visual indication of what's clickable, what's on top of what, etc. Taking that away in the service of this year's "style" is inane. Reply
  • guidryp - Friday, February 01, 2013 - link

    Color isn't needless crap.

    Monochrome icons make things harder to discover. I find that I have to look at them longer to identify them. We are only talking seconds, but it is evident that they are less ergonomic.

    The flat monochromatic looks is like the early 1990's all over again.

    We suffered through that once, no need to do it again.

    Microsoft current UI changes suck.

    It is bad enough they are forcing Metro on us, but they are also trying to make all their traditional UI's look flat a featureless as well.
  • name99 - Friday, February 01, 2013 - link

    Wow! It's obvious designers have learned NOTHING from the 20th century.
    100 years after Mies van der Rohe, fifty years after Jane Jacobs and Cabrini-Green and we still have this bizarre "Fsck you, public. We are the designers, we know style, you stupid ignorant opinions mean nothing to us." attitude.

    Did people prefer cutting out the "needless crap" of modernist architecture? Was the "machine for living" REALLY more efficient? Yes, Villa Tugendhat, to take one example, looks nice in a photo. But is it ACTUALLY a house you want to live in? Especially taking into account the massive cost to build it, then the massive cost to maintain it (turns out flat roofs leak horribly in a wet climate --- who would have though? turns out glass, especially 1930s glass, doesn't hold heat well in a cold climate --- who'd have thought?).

    Have you NO humility man? Are you not the slightest interested in the possibility that perhaps usability matters to people more than pure aesthetics? Are you completely unaware of the historical parallels to your current unbridled arrogance?
  • steven75 - Sunday, February 03, 2013 - link

    You can seriously look at that Outlook screenshot and tell me with a straight face its not a complete chaotic mess? Reply
  • steven75 - Sunday, February 03, 2013 - link

    And comparing a website to something like Outlook makes it clear you have no idea what the difference is between a tool (Outlook) and content you passively read like a website. Reply
  • ThePegasi - Thursday, February 07, 2013 - link

    How you managed to navigate to this article, let alone type and post a response, is somewhat baffling if all you do is read websites rather than interact with them. Many websites are just as much a tool as Outlook. You use navigation buttons, and even menus, and also read content (whether it be web content or an email). App-style interaction is very common on newer websites (which are the ones we're talking about if the discussion is around the most recent approaches to web design). Reply
  • Tams80 - Friday, February 08, 2013 - link

    This website isn't too bad. The Verge on the other hand, that would be a better analogy; i.e. bleurgh!!! (to the people you seem to be trying to preach to).

    There was no need for Microsoft to not have an option for us to use the older UI, it wouldn't have changed functionality. With what's happened with W8 though, that was never going to happen.
  • ThePegasi - Thursday, February 07, 2013 - link

    Just to be clear, I don't necessarily agree with all the assertions he/she made, but I felt that this particular distinction you made was worth addressing. Reply
  • cyberguyz - Monday, February 04, 2013 - link

    Looks like MS Office (and by extension Win 8) was designed by people just like you friend - designers that Just Don't Get It. The whole freaking lot of you should be fired and replaced by 5-year-olds armed with crayons. They couldn't do any worse.

    I have Office 2013 co-installed with Office 2010 (the 2013 was a freebie upgrade for me) on one of my systems. Y'know what? Outlook 2013 looks so bad that I will just not use it. Guess which MS Office I do use on a regular basis.

    Office and Windows may be just dandy feature-wise, but if Microsoft insists on following this butt-ugly UI course there are on, they have seen the last dime of profit they will be making from me. I am voting with my wallet just as all other paying consumers are voting with theirs. Judging from Microsoft's profit reports, I have a pretty good idea how that vote is going.
  • Murloc - Friday, February 01, 2013 - link

    I have to agree with B3an, it's us people becoming older and being nostalgic of old-fashioned stuff.
    All the design is going in this direction althoguh I like windows 7 aero style more, but I understand that it's old fashioned and I'm behaving like an old woman who keeps wearing clothes that were fashionable in the 50s because it's just what she's used to.
    We have to get over it. Colorful icons look too busy and cheap for todays' standards.
    In a few years when someone sees a shiny design similar to windows 7, he will say:
    "hey the 00s called....".
  • guidryp - Friday, February 01, 2013 - link

    Totally disagree.

    Monochrome icons all look the same on first glance. You need to waste more time deciphering them.

    The flat featureless crap was windows in the early 1990's.

    It is also totally ridiculous that you like Aero more, but you are willing to give it up and defend flat monochrome because Microsoft is pushing that fashion.

    Talk about sheep.
  • Tetracycloide - Friday, February 01, 2013 - link

    It's ridiculous that you can't make a coherent argument about UI design without calling someone a sheep because they don't agree with your position... Reply
  • Parhel - Friday, February 01, 2013 - link

    You must be new to tech sites. This is where the socially maladjusted come to call everyone who disagrees with them 'Sheep'. Reply
  • guidryp - Friday, February 01, 2013 - link

    I am not calling him a sheep for disagreeing with me.

    I am calling him sheep because he is willing to abandon what he actually likes better, to follow the latest fashion MS dictates.

    "... althoguh I like windows 7 aero style more, but...."

    Nothing quite as sheep like as abandoning what you actually prefer to follow a new corporate directive.
  • FunBunny2 - Friday, February 01, 2013 - link

    C'mon. The Great God Steve refused to make a color-tubed machine and one with a hard drive. Events caught up with him, but he was convinced. Reply
  • Wolfpup - Thursday, March 07, 2013 - link

    This has nothing to do with "old-fashioned". This has to do with useability. Shadows and the like weren't introduced randomly or for fashion, they were introduced because they're more FUNCTIONAL. Removing them for fashion's sake is insane and incompetent. Reply
  • Cygni - Friday, February 01, 2013 - link

    Agreed. The UI is absolutely terrible. The flat monochromes and ALL CAPS TEXT in 1998 era fonts. Just looks horrifically bad. Reply
  • steven75 - Sunday, February 03, 2013 - link

    It's so bad if my employers forced this version of Outlook in me I'd be tempted to retreat to the web access version. Reply
  • crispbp04 - Friday, February 01, 2013 - link

    Chrome and useless flash is JUNK. Are you also impressed by old Honda civics with fart pipes, a 4 foot wing, and a crappy paint job?

    Maybe it's time to look in mirror and ask why yourself "Why am I a cynical hater?" It's possible that it will expose the core reasons why you're being an unoriginal bandwagon hater drone, instead of someone who backs up their rants with facts and examples.

    I understand that "haters gon' hate" and try to invent bogus reasons to support their ignorance, but at the end of the day, it shines through nonetheless.
  • colonelpepper - Friday, February 01, 2013 - link

    you're hilarious.
    ...look at your own screed.
  • Tams80 - Friday, February 08, 2013 - link

    I agree. White space is badly used. There is a lack of contrast and worst it's painful on the eyes (even using 'dark' modes), which is certainly not helped by the CAPITALS. The menu uses too much screen estate. Then the whole look and feel just feels 'off' to me. Reply
  • Freakie - Friday, February 01, 2013 - link

    I really dig the new student subscription to Office. It does suck that it only lasts a max of 8 years, but picking up new .edu email addresses aren't the most difficult thing in the world... Though were 365 really shines is if your university/business has an Enterprise subscription with Lync. Our university did just that and rolled out Lync to everyone last week and it is POWERFUL. It radically changes how us students can collaborate with each other and our professors and really integrates well with a bunch of devices making it really versatile. It's a huge upgrade for us xP And any university in my opinion. Reply
  • VivekGowri - Friday, February 01, 2013 - link

    Yeah, our university gave everyone Professional Plus with Lync. I dunno how it's going to play out (or even if that many people will upgrade) but it could end up being really awesome in the future. Reply
  • Freakie - Friday, February 01, 2013 - link

    So far it seems that most on our campus have positive feelings about it. We also switched our webmail over to Office 365 so that was even bigger than adding in Lync, and that's were most of the complaints are coming from. But our University, UC Merced, is less than 10 years old and with all the technology teething pains that have gone on since the school's start, it's not as hard to get people to switch or start using a new system because we're all used to it by now. Plus it's a pretty small campus, so IT's evangelist efforts to get people using Lync don't fall on deaf ears and they don't have nearly as much trouble reaching everyone as larger universities do. Reply
  • steven75 - Sunday, February 03, 2013 - link

    How is it better than other universities that have been using gmail (via Google Apps) with that built in for years now? Reply
  • CeriseCogburn - Friday, February 01, 2013 - link

    iCloud looks like iFool on some levels. Reply
  • beginner99 - Friday, February 01, 2013 - link

    I paid less than that price for a bundle with 3 licenses of Office 2010 containing the exact same applications. Just double check and on the shop I use you can actually see it right next to each other, office 2010 with 3 licenses and office 2013 with 1 for exactly the same price. (and I paid less over a year ago for that bundle with 3 licenses than it costs now).

    So basically MS managed to increase the price by 300%....and people don't even mention it in reviews? Even worse:

    " It’s great. If you’ve got 4 or 5 computers to install Office on, $99/year isn’t bad at all"

    With Office 2010 I could get 6 licenses for about double that price. But then I can use them as long as I want not just 1 year. Yes, my bundle is missing Access but then most home users don't need that anyway and also most home users keep an office version for years, I would say 5-10 years is not uncommon.

    Sorry no. They managed to increases price massively and reviewers applaud for it??? Well, will probably switch to libre-office once my 2010 is outdated.
  • A5 - Friday, February 01, 2013 - link

    Um, your prices are way below what nearly all non-academic users paid. You sure you weren't buying the RZR1911 edition? Reply
  • beginner99 - Friday, February 01, 2013 - link

    No idea what you mean b yRZR1911 but here a link:

    That's $139 for 3 PCs.
  • Arbie - Friday, February 01, 2013 - link

    Thanks for the link. And A5 owes you an apology. Reply
  • quickbunnie - Friday, February 01, 2013 - link

    No outlook.

    If you don't use outlook and have only 1 computer, this round is a big value loss.
    If you do, Vivek's pricing value is valid.
  • Ant-Acid - Sunday, March 10, 2013 - link

    But it's not the same bundle. The old Home and Student is Word/Excel/Powerpoint/OneNote. The HP also has Publisher/Access/Outlook.

    Most Mum's and Dad's want Publisher as well so the new Office 365 HP is excellent value (Source: I retailed PC's from 2000-2010).

    In my house of 5 it is cheaper to subscribe for 10yrs than to purchase the included software outright, and you get the upgrades to the new versions free when the release with the subscription.
  • JediJeb - Sunday, February 03, 2013 - link

    MS just wants to switch everyone over to a rental model so they can maintain a constant revenue stream. For people like me we can function perfectly well running Office95 if only it would still load on newer machines. Honestly there is absolutely nothing the newer Office versions offer that I need above what the older versions offered.

    Another problem I would have switching to Office365 would be the need for constant internet access to make it operate. Even at work we often suffer from internet outages that can last all day, are we supposed to just shut down because our apps quit working?

    Microsoft hates the fact that I could purchase a piece of software and function perfectly well with it for 10 years, because that means they can not receive a constant stream of money. At work we just got rid of our last W95 machine a couple years ago, a W3.1 box a year before that and still have two running WinNT4, MS really hates us I am sure, but if they function as needed, why spend money?

    5-10 years is definitely not uncommon in many shops, especially if the budgets are tight.
  • mayankleoboy1 - Friday, February 01, 2013 - link

    No info on how well excel performs ? If it supports better multithreading, or uses more SSE4/SSE4.1/AVX instructions ? Are calculations faster ?
    Are image manipulation faster in powerpoint ?

    Also, how well does the UI use the GPU/Direct2D ? (which was supposed to be a big change in Win8. Remember "Everything accelerated" blog )
  • philosofool - Friday, February 01, 2013 - link


    It's office, dude. If you can run Vista or later, this will run just fine. You could wonder about performance, but for the vast majority of users, performance increases won't even be noticeable, much less valuable. I used to be able to slow excel down by making it compute three and four variable linear regressions on my pre-intel MacBook... Haven' had the slowness problem on any x86 processor I've used in the last decade though.
  • Parhel - Friday, February 01, 2013 - link

    I used to have to wait quite a while with Excel 2007 whenever I would do a VLOOKUP on a calculated value with a large dataset. There were ways around it, but it was never all that hard to choke Excel. I don't use it much anymore, so I can't speak to the newer versions. Reply
  • Kevin G - Friday, February 01, 2013 - link

    I've been able to bring my Ivy Bridge Core i5 to its knees in Excel 2010 via using array formulas over medium sized data sets (~30,000 rows). This stuff if run through a good JIT compiler should only take moments. I'm confident that Excel has continually regressed in performance for the past 15 years. Reply
  • MrEcho - Friday, February 01, 2013 - link

    Does the new Office 2013 or 365 offer real time collaboration like Google?
    For our company this is a huge thing for us, we love it and really use it.
    Yesterday we had 7 people working on the same spreadsheet, at the same time, no joke. And everything worked great. And the built in chat per document, very nice.
    If your not trying to write a Masters thesis, and want to do some basic work, MS Office is a bit over kill. I could never justify spending $100+ per seat to my CEO.
  • Freakie - Friday, February 01, 2013 - link

    Yes, if your company gets the Office 365 subscription with Lync then you can have up to 249 people all working on a single document, with video and voice chatting built in as well. It even brings the current speaker's video feed front and center (when someone talks, their video becomes the "main" video). You can also keep the same "Meeting" going while switching documents in and out; it is sort of a digital whiteboard. Lync is also an instant messaging system that allows you do contact everyone in your business and organize them like they would be in an Active Directory (Company, Department, Unit, Individual or however your company is organized) So you can instantly communicate with anyone in your company without using email/outlook and through any device as Lync is available on just about every mobile platform. It also integrates with your cell phone number and you can send/receive all of your text messages with Office 365 so when you are at your desk you can keep up with your mobile communications while still on one device (your computer) Reply
  • steven75 - Sunday, February 03, 2013 - link

    You're aware gchat existed for years now along side Google Apps, right? Reply
  • tzhu07 - Friday, February 01, 2013 - link

    If your employer or academic institution is part of Microsoft's Home Use Program, you can get Office Professional Plus 2013 for only $10.

    I used my old University of Washington email account "" and it went through. Seriously great deal on a pro-grade suite.
  • Friendly0Fire - Friday, February 01, 2013 - link

    Wow, thanks for the heads-up, this is definitely better than *any* other deal I've seen. Reply
  • poohbear - Friday, February 01, 2013 - link

    "Or, alternatively, you could pay a student to get you an Office 365 University serial number on the cheap."

    isn't that against the end user agreement? Ultimately if you're really trying to save money and don't care about the end user agreement, then you can just pay someone $20 on the internet for Office 2013, but you don't include that in your article, just the "pay a student $79". lol
  • Taft12 - Friday, February 01, 2013 - link

    I've found the same on DT as well. Anti-piracy sentiment, but plenty of appetite for abusing discounts individuals shouldn't qualify for. Theres no ethical difference. Reply
  • BrokenCrayons - Friday, February 01, 2013 - link

    I agree with this comment. Seeing an article that promotes violating the EULA of a software suite is a bit alarming. I'd encourage a few edits that remove the bits that discuss getting Office 365 at a cost a customer may not be entitled to pay. Reply
  • jamyryals - Friday, February 01, 2013 - link

    Agree 100%. There are free options to choose from if you don't want to pay for Office products. should not encourage, endorse, or detail how to commit fraud. Reply
  • andrewaggb - Friday, February 01, 2013 - link

    yeah, I agree - lets not encourage fraudulent behavior. You've said it yourself, microsoft should probably adjust the pricing for home premium. That's the real issue. Reply
  • Bat123Man - Friday, February 01, 2013 - link

    Going back as far as StarOffice, although I never really did much more than play around with that product. But when OpenOffice was made available, I jumped on board. Haven't used an MS Office prog since. I now have all 4 of my kids using OpenOffice, and they think it is great. I have asked many industry friends if I am missing out on anything by forgoing MS Office products, but have yet to come up with a compelling reason to switch to a paid suite.

  • guidryp - Friday, February 01, 2013 - link

    I guess there really is a sucker born every minute if people are really signing up to RENT MS Office for a $100/year. Reply
  • colonelpepper - Friday, February 01, 2013 - link

    exactly. only a microsoft shill would defend this idea. Reply
  • N4g4rok - Friday, February 01, 2013 - link

    It's not that bad.

    If you use all if the applications that usually come with the Professional editions of office, then after 4 years, you've paid the same price for five installations of it as you would have for a single one. Plus, the subscription gives you access to an upgrade when the new version comes out. Which is likely to happen in 3 - 4 years. combine that with the free Skype minutes and extra Skydrive storage, and it isn't that bad a deal.
  • colonelpepper - Saturday, February 02, 2013 - link

    Actually it's pretty flippin terrible.

    I've been using office 2003 for 10 years... it works perfectly. Apart from aesthetics (which have gotten worse) there is no compelling reason for almost anyone to upgrade past 2003.

    Another fact: Almost nobody "uses all of the applications" that come with Office
    Another fact: The only way that microsoft can convince people to upgrade has been to implement backwards-INcompatible file formats with each successive iteration of Microsoft office.

    This push for subscription-based software which you don't own is COMPLETELY TERRIBLE for user rights. Nobody, absolutely NOBODY should be defending microsoft here... it is completely inexcusable (this push for subscription based Office).

    Download LibreOffice! There's the link. It costs nothing. It is free of spyware (unlike office). It does everything that will satisfy the needs of 99.9999999999% of all "office users".

    ...where is the LibreOffice review Anandtech???
    or is it corporate propaganda articles only these days?
  • cjl - Saturday, February 02, 2013 - link

    While I agree that the office rental is a pretty bad deal, MS has not implemented "backwards-INcompatible file formats with each successive iteration of office" (or anywhere close to it, really). The formats stayed constant up through 2003, through several iterations, and then they changed once in 2007 (but they retained the ability to save in backwards-compatible formats). Then, Office 2010 and now 2013 share the same file formats as 2007, so once again, there is no forced obsolescence. In addition, Office 2007 (and later) added significant features over the older versions, so there are plenty of reasons to switch aside from mere aesthetics.

    As for LibreOffice? I've tried it, and unfortunately, it lacks many features compared to MS Office. It works fine for basic users (and to be honest, if you're happy with the feature set of Office 2003, you are a basic user, and LibreOffice would probably be an upgrade as far as features are concerned), but if you use some of the more advanced features in Office, it isn't really a viable substitute.
  • N4g4rok - Saturday, February 02, 2013 - link

    When you say "subscription-based software which you don't own", i'm not entirely sure what your issue is. Ownership in all practicality is the same as buying the individual license. Yes, it's more like leasing than purchasing, but that isn't inherently a bad thing.

    "It is free of spyware (unlike office)"

    I'm not even sure what you're getting at there. It sounds a little paranoid, but the definition of spyware could be muddied to include the improvement program microsofts implements. There's an opt-out for that as well, so i don't know how your 'Spyware' accusation holds any ground.

    "Nobody, absolutely NOBODY should be defending microsoft here"

    Naturally, i don't agree. supporting microsoft does not immediately make you a shill or a throwaway in a debate about software companies. Microsoft isn't the evil company that some would claim they are.
  • Ant-Acid - Sunday, March 10, 2013 - link

    So I am a sucker for being in front even after 20 yrs of "renting" Office?

    To get the same apps (Word, Excel, Powerpoint, Onenote, Outlook, Access, And Publisher.) as a once off purchase for 1 PC is ~$550 here in Australia.
    Now multiply that by the 5 PC's that we each have in my house.
    That's $2750.
    Now divide that by $119 for Office 365 HP. That's ~23 years of "renting" and then I am starting to better off purchasing outright, and I don't have to find $2750 right now.

    The subscription is for the *current* version (read: free upgrades) as well.
  • tipoo - Friday, February 01, 2013 - link

    All that white is an eyesore. Reply
  • steven75 - Sunday, February 03, 2013 - link

    You just don't get it, maaaan. He *designers* say everything should be endless white space. That's like, what the future is. Nothing with be distinguishable at a glance--just white space as far as the eye can see! Reply
  • nalim - Friday, February 01, 2013 - link

    "It’s been six years since they debuted, so anyone that is still complaining about Ribbon UI should really get over it, especially now that Windows Explorer uses it as well."
    What a lame logic!
  • JediJeb - Sunday, February 03, 2013 - link

    Just because some people find the Ribbon to be lame does not make them lame themselves. Everyone has a different way of thinking, and to some the Ribbon is illogical at best.

    If everyone's thought process was exactly the same, there would only be one style of house, one style of automobile, one type of computer, one type of food, ect. What one finds stupid and useless another finds perfectly logical and useful. You like the Ribbon, some don't. Thinking everyone should is the lame logic here.
  • Arbie - Friday, February 01, 2013 - link

    Is this about you or about Office 365? Reply
  • Guspaz - Friday, February 01, 2013 - link

    Office was launched in November of 1990, which gives us a maximum age for Vivek of 22 years :) Reply
  • tipoo - Friday, February 01, 2013 - link

    22 and done a masters? It's possible I guess, but not common. Reply
  • WeaselITB - Friday, February 01, 2013 - link

    Yeah, I was going to say:

    Wow, Office and Windows were before he was born? I feel old. :-/
  • VivekGowri - Saturday, February 02, 2013 - link

    I'm 21 :) Reply
  • FunBunny2 - Friday, February 01, 2013 - link

    Well, depends on how you measure. "Office" isn't a program, and never was, it's just the name for a bundle of GUI programs: Word, Excel, PPT, etc. The first GUI program in the bundle was Word for Mac (paid for by Apple, by the way), in 1985. That's nearly 30 years. Reply
  • philosofool - Friday, February 01, 2013 - link

    Can I buy two university licenses and then use it on 4 devices? Also, what happens when I replace a licensed device? 4 years is longer than the typical student's laptop lasts. Reply
  • HardwareDufus - Friday, February 01, 2013 - link

    Is their a different file structure for Office 2013 vs 2010 documents?

    For instance, there was little change between Office 2007 structures and 2010.
  • Subyman - Friday, February 01, 2013 - link

    I believe it is somewhat strange that the author keeps discussing breaking MS's EULA by recommending users consider getting a student to purchase a license for non-educational use. Reply
  • Lazlo Panaflex - Friday, February 01, 2013 - link

    "I’ve always been a fan of the ribbons, which I thought were a good idea in Office 2007 but really came into their own with Office 2010. It’s been six years since they debuted, so anyone that is still complaining about Ribbon UI should really get over it"

    Really? Maybe your Microsoft fanboi-ish comments belong in a blog, not a front page article.
  • colonelpepper - Friday, February 01, 2013 - link

    agreed.. totally unprofessional
    totally reading like it was written by microsoft
  • N4g4rok - Friday, February 01, 2013 - link

    Just being in the article doesn't imply that it's fact. He's entitled to his opinion, as are you. No reason to continue the use of the phrase 'fanboi.' It gets nothing accomplished. Reply
  • CaedenV - Friday, February 01, 2013 - link

    While $100/year for 5 machines is not bad, I do not have 5 machines. In fact I use to have 3 machines at home, 2 desktops and 1 laptop, but our new Lumia 920s have replaced the need for the laptop and it has sat unused for the last 2 months that we have had our phones, so we will likely get rid of it before long.

    In the past I have upgraded Office Home every 2 generations (~6 years), which breaks down to ~$12.50 per year per machine for 2 machines, which is an easy pill to swallow. I understand that I am getting a lot more out of the new package, but $50/year/machine (because I am not going to buy more computers just for the sake of having them) is a bit on the insane side of things.

    I played with the beta, and loved everything about it except for the lack of a dark color theme (easier on the eyes at night), but unless they come out with a 2 machine $40 install or 3 machine $60 install option then there is just no way I will buy it. That would already be a major increase in the amount of money MS would be getting out of me for Office, and my usage would not be all that different than it currently is, so it would not me that much extra effort for MS to invest in supporting me as a user

    I hardly feel like openoffice is an adequate replacement for MS Office... but then again it is free yet capable, while this new office demands a lot more money out of me.
  • CaedenV - Friday, February 01, 2013 - link

    OK, so I have a MS account, and my wife has a MS account, and my kiddos have MS accounts (though it will be a few years before they actually use them). We have 2 computers in the house; My machine, and my wife's machine. Lets say that I purchase Office 365 for the family, which allows us to install office on our 2 machines, and on up to 3 supposed future machines.

    So the loaded question: Who gets the 20GB skydrive?
    Do I get the 20GB skydrive and then have the 'privlage' of purchasing it for the other 3 in the family (an added cost of $30/yr)?
    Do we all get extended skydrive accts?
    What happens to data on skydrive if your account were to lapse? Is the data just gone? or do you get it back if you pay for the acct again within a certain number of days?
  • N4g4rok - Friday, February 01, 2013 - link

    The microsoft account used to purchase the software gets the extra storage. If you'd like to share that storage, you can set up a shared folder in your Skydrive for them to connect to.

    I THINK that you get warning messages to move some of your files if your storage shrinks for some reason. That's only from something i vaguely remember reading though.
  • Galvin - Friday, February 01, 2013 - link

    I tried office 2013 excel. But there is so much WHITE, that after a while it just hurts your eyes. Not sure how anyone could spend long periods of time using their horrible UI.

    Its funny how people are saying modern UI that looks like the 1980s is a step. heh
  • tk11 - Friday, February 01, 2013 - link

    "I’ve always been a fan of the ribbons, which I thought were a good idea in Office 2007 but really came into their own with Office 2010. It’s been six years since they debuted, so anyone that is still complaining about Ribbon UI should really get over it"

    Why would anyone write this knowing full well that the ribbon interface is so widely loathed. You must have been looking to offend a decent chunk of your readers. If so then good job. If you want to voice an opinion that's fine but I'd much rather hear the reason that you hold that opinion rather than simply stating it then rudely suggesting that I fall in line.

    I could just as easily tell you that even after all this time that the ribbon still sucks so you should get over your preference.
  • N4g4rok - Friday, February 01, 2013 - link

    "Why would anyone write this knowing full well that the ribbon interface is so widely loathed."

    I can't personally see that as being a reason not to express an opinion about something. Even if a majority of office users despise the ribbon, it wouldn't make them "correct" about the matter, nor should it suppress opposing views.
  • colonelpepper - Saturday, February 02, 2013 - link

    It destroys the authors integrity, and reveals him as a Microsoft Shill. The "article" reads like nothing more than a Microsoft Sponsored Story. It degrades the integrity of

    Lastly, flagrantly pushing moronic opinions like "It’s been six years since they debuted, so anyone that is still complaining about Ribbon UI should really get over it" is totally clueless how to reach out to people through journalism.

    ...but then again this Microsoft Sponsored Story is not journalism at all.
  • cjl - Saturday, February 02, 2013 - link

    Wait - everyone who likes the ribbon UI is a microsoft shill, and therefore sponsored by Microsoft?

    I was not informed of this - who should I contact at microsoft to get my payment?
  • N4g4rok - Saturday, February 02, 2013 - link

    I agree that it's brash on his part, but you cannot insist that any positive feedback towards a Microsoft product is a marketing ploy. Nor does siding with Microsoft make his point invalid. There's no place in a debate for the implication that all positive feedback that doesn't mesh with an opposing personal bias is immediate evidence for foul play. Reply
  • colonelpepper - Friday, February 01, 2013 - link

    this "article" is so obviously an advertisement... what an embarassment for anandtech.

    shame on you guys
    ..and on all the microsoft shills polluting this comment section.

    what a friggin embarrassmet Anandtech. UNBELIEVABLE
  • ggathagan - Saturday, February 02, 2013 - link

    As opposed to everything you've written.
    By your standard, you are a LibreOffice 'shill'.

    As others have stated, the fact that Vivek happens to like the features of Office 2013 doesn't make him a shill, any more than your opinions make you a LibreOffice shill.

    You may not have noticed, but there's no one with a gun to your head demanding that you use any MS product.
    Feel free to live your entire life without a single MS product in your home.
    That's the beauty of choice
  • versesuvius - Saturday, February 02, 2013 - link

    Why pay all that money, when you can keep all that money. Open office is not as pretty, depending on one's moods and tastes of course, but it is ten times more reliable and in the long run more productive than any MS Office n-1. Reply
  • mechBgon - Saturday, February 02, 2013 - link

    ...exploitable, maybe. CERT's security shootout, have a look at the third chart:

    Quality code, for a premium price. Choose your preference, I guess.

    That said, I would probably get Office 2010 over Office 2013 at this point, since Office 2013 licenses can't be transferred to one's next PC. That's right, it's like an OEM Windows license, irrevocably licensed to the first PC you activate it on. And if you want to use it on your desktop and your laptop/tablet, Office 2013 requires you to buy a second license, whereas Office 2010 doesn't.

    It appears to me that Microsoft is purposely poisoning Office 2013 with these licensing shens to get more people onto the subscription model.
  • versesuvius - Sunday, February 03, 2013 - link

    I will not argue with that test, but my own experience is somewhat different. Apache Open office is in 3.4 version now and keeps getting better. In Europe, many governments and city authorities have adopted Open Office since its early versions (before Oracle and Apache), and that shows that the crash problems and productivity then were much more in favor of Open Office and with the latest improvements the situation has not changed much. Anyway for small business and individuals,if not with enterprises, Open Office makes a compelling case. After all 30,000,000 downloads for Apache Open Office alone is bound to make it a more viable platform every day. And again, it is free. Reply
  • mechBgon - Sunday, February 03, 2013 - link

    You mean, the _up-front cost_ is free. How about the TCO? Microsoft has some compelling advantages there. Installation, security, updating, auditing, and configuration enforcement are all centrally manageable with Group Policy, WSUS, and MBSA, among other tools.

    It certainly beats hand-installing and hand-configuring a thousand workstations, wondering if the employees have altered the security configuration, wondering if they're up-to-date, and knowing that you had to allow Admin rights to update the software. Over the course of a 3-5 year lifecycle, which one's really cheaper? And how much does a security breach cost?

    Then there's Open Office's deplorable inclusion of a Java Runtime Environment by default. If they were deliberately attempting to create a security liability, that's a great opening move.
  • versesuvius - Sunday, February 03, 2013 - link

    Very few open source software updates like paid software. The reason for that is simply the fact that updating automatically requires an online server or actually many servers, which costs money. The free software only gives you a notification and the update is usually a download and an install into the same directory. But that does not mean that updating many installation has to be done manually. It can be done automatically through scripts or other methods. As I said governments in Europe have adopted Open Office since many years ago and they are very likely to have security as a high priority on their list. Anyway, all that you mention can be done through either OS services, with Linux being very good at it, or through scripts which any serious enterprise easily has the resources available for and in place already. An interesting point is that contrary to what you say, when it comes to thousands of installations the first time installation make the cost of Open Office almost the same as MS Office. (I remember in a European city, Microsoft's bid was lower than Open Office's, but the city went ahead with Open Office anyways). After that it is almost free with Open Office and permanently very costly with MS Office. I remember Microsoft at a time was offering the entire office suite for 3 dollars in China. It was done to combat piracy, but the end result is the same. It is the long run profits that Microsoft makes that is important to the company, not the initial payment. Reply
  • HisDivineOrder - Saturday, February 02, 2013 - link

    ...for a lot of users. I think you really covered that. You'd think they'd want to get everyone on the MS teet, suckling that Office goodness in a subscription they'd get for years and years to come. Just like you said, getting us to pay for more and more devices to have access.

    Instead, they're like confused about what they want to do. On the one hand, they want to charge the same as they always do for the single license, no subscription. And on the other, they want TONS of money from subscriptions, charging an insane amount for a year's worth of use of something. If they'd shave $10 off per copy that I wouldn't use on devices, let me decide how many devices i need to have access to the subscription, then this would be a great deal for me.

    Otherwise, I don't think they get who their competition really is. Sure, they're competing with Google Docs, LibreOffice, OpenOffice, etc. But that's not the real competition they should be afraid of.

    They should be afraid of everyone who has Office 2010/2007 who is looking at this and shrugging. Most of what 2013 offers in Skydrive functionality that ordinary users would appreciate can be duplicated by changing your FREE Skydrive account to look at your documents folder. And for anyone who had Skydrive before it was Skydrive, they have not 7 GB, but 25 GB already. I'd imagine quite a few of THOSE users already have Office 2010.

    So... by pricing this in the stratosphere, they've killed any and all impulse buying of this product.

    As far as I can tell from this "review," the only other real reason to get this is if you have a Touch device. How many x86 computers out there based on touch will be used via touch enough to make an Office built around touch worthwhile? How big is that audience?
  • flensr - Sunday, February 03, 2013 - link

    No subscription for me, no way. I got office 2007 student edition back in 2007, for under $100 if I recall correctly. I'm still using it, 5 years later and have no reason to upgrade. I know how to use it, it's compatible with everything I need to do.

    A subscription would be a total ripoff for me and my family. I'm just not going to do it.
  • benedict - Sunday, February 03, 2013 - link

    So Vivek graduated and got a job at Microsoft. Grats! Reply
  • Da W - Sunday, February 03, 2013 - link

    It's not me that says it, it's all of you bitches posting on this site. Lost your start button? Don't like the ribbon? And now what, you don,t like the COLOR of office? Are you freaking serious? GET A LIFE! Reply
  • Tams80 - Friday, February 08, 2013 - link

    If we're paying for something, then we are perfectly within our moral rights to complain if we don't like parts of it. Unsurprisingly, I reckon a lot of us have just not bothered upgrading (and thus paying). Reply
  • Touche - Sunday, February 03, 2013 - link

    Just as I thought that UI degradation couldn't get worse than 2007->2010:

    They actually managed to make 2013 even less user friendly and ergonomic. Metro "progress" I guess. An the white, OMG, do they bundle sunglasses with the new Office?
  • Tams80 - Friday, February 08, 2013 - link

    At least 2010 had a few updates that outweighed the minor changes in UI. I must admit, 2007 looks better.

    Do reviews factor in the cost of sunglasses? XD
  • scarhead - Sunday, February 03, 2013 - link

    So from the review, I understand the M$FT's pricing model and that there's a new look that people should just get used to.

    How about performance-wise? Does Excel handle larger files faster? Large spreadsheets with my i7-3820QM/6G SSD isn't as snappy as I think Excel should be. Any new formulas or macro commands?

    I see it's easier to import pictures into Word. Once they're in, any faster?

    The Mac version is slightly mentioned once. Any other differences between the two platforms?
  • enterusername - Monday, February 04, 2013 - link

    I've been reading Anandtech for a long time and I'm generally impressed with the quality of articles.

    This "article" however is just sad. It looks like a blog from a Microsoft fan.

    What about security? It it advicable to store all documents on Skydrive?
    Microsoft has a very poor trackrecord for securiting their emailservice for instance.
    Should people just really get over the GUI if they don't like it? Is that what people should do if they don't like a product?
    Is $100/year really a good deal for most people? Do you even know what most people use Office for?
    What about performance for people who are using Excel for more than their home-budget?

    This is just an anoying article. Please don't degrade Anantech with this kind of crap.

    Btw: I'm using Office 2013 every day.
  • Avenger762 - Monday, February 04, 2013 - link

    Someone needs to use spell checker for office. In the picture, the items are spelled "Maoi" when it should be "Moai". Reply
  • The0ne - Monday, February 04, 2013 - link

    Finally upgraded from 2003. 365 IS more of a aesthetic/visual upgrade and for me it works very nicely. In fact, the fluidity of working in the new apps is such a joy. The new ribbon is a tad better but I still rely mainly on the single customizable bar. There are templates to get most people going and styles that can easily make your documents nice and pretty.

    However, there are still a few things buggy about the programs, in particular Skydrive. This Office is really no different than from 2003. Most of the internals are still the same, with most of the same bugs and options. I don't think this is going to change unless the code is drastically changed. I've and a few others on the MS community site have encountered this really aweful bug where an Excel file would take forever to complete a function such as selecting a cell. So far no permanent fix has been issued.

    I've been using 365 since beta and Skydrive has a lot of critical bugs that may deter users and even corporate users away. I have many pending critical bugs on their help site but so far none has been able to resolved most of them. I'll list a few examples,

    1. Skydrive made copies of each of the file from each of the computer, renaming them to end with the PC name that connected to it.

    2. Skydrive can't unshared a file from one or more person. This is dangerous.

    3. Skydrive unable to sync properly on various computers even after re-installing several times.

    If you are synced to Skydrive you have to realize that it will upload your changes to the cloud. That means if your file is large and depending on your connection and what not it may slow you down in your work. On the bottom of the program it'll tell you that it's updating to Skydrive. Also realize most of these issues are from me sharing and allowing multiple users to the files. For now, I'm holding off until they can at least address the issues I've encounter. I definitely don't want to lose data because Skydrive decided to chew it up.

    I would recommend the new suite. The fluidity makes it much more enjoyable to work in, at least for me. I love typing now because of that single feature. Have fun.
  • rothnic - Tuesday, February 05, 2013 - link

    Vivek, nice overview. I do think Microsoft has a little of a communication problem with this recent release in regard to Office 2013 vs 356, and you helped clear it up for me.

    I recently purchased Office 2013 Professional through one of the employer partnership programs that allow employees to purchase Microsoft software at a big discount. I was able to get Pro for $10, then Visio for another $10. Project was another $10, but I didn't need it at the time.

    I also am currently working on my masters through a new distance program (search Georgia Tech PMASE), where we work 90% of the time in teams, have a two dave video teleconference every 3-4 weeks, recorded lectures, and a team assignment due each week. One of the things we found hugely useful was using Google Hangouts along with Drive/Docs. I use Hangouts about every other day, and use Google Drive as much as possible.

    The main issue we have with Google Drive is that the applications just do not help you produce the same quality of presentations as Office, especially 2013 (agree about the themes/templates). So we tend to work on Docs through brainstorming and rough drafts then we start the handing of versioned .docx documents back and forth through Google Drive.

    Even though my teammates don't currently have 2013, I'd be very interested if you could do a detailed look at the real time editing functionality of 2013. What the differences are between web and native applications, etc. After looking at other articles it looks like it may not be as useful as Google Drive/Docs, but isn't so straightforward.
  • MrCrispy - Tuesday, February 05, 2013 - link

    I really don't like how Windows 8 and Office 2013 have so much shiny wasted white space. And they've taken away the ability to customize color schemes. Reply
  • IgorP - Saturday, February 09, 2013 - link

    This new UI has no depth. Using one colour for everything completely removes all the different levels of the UI which are important for productivity.

    When we perceive information visually our brains will naturally try to group the information to better and more quickly decipher it. This is done in many different ways but two major ones are colour and size. If you make everything a sea of white littered with similarly sized, shaped and coloured information, suddenly your brain starts to jump around and it becomes more difficult to focus on and find distinct areas.

    It's literally exhausting to look at. The situation improves slightly with the "Dark" theme, but not enough.
  • andypost - Monday, July 29, 2013 - link

    They should change the pricing to $49 for 2 PCs per year. I think that will drive adoption greatly! Reply

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