Office 2010 introduces new tools that improve the efficiency of the notoriously bloated productivity suite. Here, we look at time-saving tips for all versions of Office.
Microsoft Office 2010 is expected to go on sale in the next month or so. Available in beta since late 2009, Office 2010 introduces new tools that improve the efficiency of the notoriously bloated productivity suite.
These include the ability to preview paste options and edit images within a Word document; create Sparkline charts in Excel - tiny graphs within a cell that summarise data in preceding cells; and broadcast a PowerPoint presentation without first setting up a web meeting.
Outlook also gets a revamp, with the ribbon interface first introduced to other Office programs in the 2007 suite looking likely to make email management easier. You'll be able to view threaded conversations, too.
But the biggest change of all is the introduction of Office Web Apps. This online dimension to the suite is Microsoft's nod towards the cloud. Using this, you'll be able to view, edit and share Word, PowerPoint, Excel and OneNote documents online.
You don't need to have Office 2010 installed to use Web Apps; documents can be accessed from any computer with an internet connection and in any web browser.
This first iteration of Web Apps will have limited functionality, but it's a move we're happy to see Microsoft make. The online version of Word will offer basic functions such as printing documents, copying and pasting text, inserting images and hyperlinks, creating tables and spellchecking. Excel, PowerPoint and OneNote will have even fewer features.
Another provision for working online sees Office 2010 integrating the Windows Live SkyDrive storage service, offering up to 25GB.
Microsoft has promised a free Office 2010 upgrade voucher to those who buy Office 2007 between now and 30 September. Editions purchased with an educational discount are excluded from this offer.
For new users, Office 2010 will cost £109 for a Home and Student three-user licence, £239 for a Home and Business two-user licence and £429 for a Professional two-user licence.
Here, we look at time-saving tips for all versions of Office.
Use Microsoft Word more efficiently
Step 1. It can be irritating to copy and paste text from the web into a Word document and find that hyperlinks remain intact. Right-clicking each link and choosing ‘Remove Hyperlink' can be time-consuming if you have multiple instances; instead, select all the text (Ctrl, A) and press Ctrl, Shift, F9.
Step 2. It's possible to increase font sizes by double-clicking to select the text you want and then choosing from the options available in the ribbon toolbar. A faster method is to hold down Shift and use the arrow keys to select the text, then press ] to increase or [ to decrease the font size in 1pt increments.