Microsoft has announced details of the pricing scheme for the upcoming Office 2010 editions. As I've written before, the new student dedicated edition - Office Professional Academic - will be thrown together with the usual list of editions, along with the previous student-favourite, Office Home and Student.
Office Professional Academic 2010This edition will cost only $99 which is a massive drop in price from previous equivalent Office Home and Student editions. It's also the most disproportionally priced (but in a good way), as it has most of the applications included such as Word, Excel, PowerPoint, OneNote, Publisher, Outlook and Access, for such as small price. It will work in conjunction with the free version of Office Web Apps which run through SkyDrive.
To buy it online, you will need to provide your university email address, and boxed copies will be sold in authorised university bookshops and retailers, such as student unions. However only "qualified students and educators" will be able to purchase the boxed copy by presenting a university student/staff ID card in store.
The non-academic Office Professional 2010 edition which has the same applications is priced at $349-$499, which saves the student literally hundreds of dollars. I would expect UK prices to be higher than the equivalent in currency due to tax and VAT, but shouldn't exceed £100.
Office Home and Student 2010This edition is designed really for the home-student and mature students who have families of their own, and is priced at $119 with a product key card, or $149 for an ordinary boxed copy.
While Though the Professional Academic edition can only be installed once twice, this edition allows you to install it up to three times on different computers at home.
The product key card allows users to quickly upgrade to a higher edition of Office at a cheaper cost. Either way, this edition includes Word, Excel, PowerPoint, OneNote and again, the free version of Office Web Apps.
The Ultimate Steal is still around and available for students to buy Office Ultimate 2007 at a far cheaper cost until December 2010, but is unclear whether this will roll out to Office 2010. Firstly, we don't really know when the new Office version will launch and the rather cheap cost of the Professional Academic edition may negate the point of having further discounted software.
But I have it assured that Microsoft is continuing to look at ways for students to get the best value for their money, and evaluate the Ultimate Steal promotion (or similar) once it ends.
We shall see, Microsoft. We shall see.