Microsoft is putting the finishing touches on Office 2007 Service Pack (SP) 1 and is hoping to roll it out the week of December 10, according to sources claiming familiarity with Microsoft's schedule.
Microsoft officials said last month during the company's TechEd conference in Barcelona that Office 2007 SP1 was tracking toward shipping in the first calendar quarter of 2008.
With Microsoft's SharePoint Server 2007 team hinting during the past week that SharePoint Server 2007 SP1 was due imminently, some company watchers began wondering whether Office 2007 SP1 might be ready early, too. One Softie said that Microsoft's due date for SharePoint Server SP1 was simply guidance of the "latest possible delivery date" via which Microsoft planned to make the update available.
Arpan Shah, Director of Technical Product Management for SharePoint Products and Technologies, posted on December 2:'
"We posted a blog entry late last week describing what SP1 will contain. Though we've provided a preview of SP1, the only public comment we've made about SP1 availability is that SP1 will release by early calendar year 2008. That means it can release anytime between now and Q1 of 2008."
It is sounding like Microsoft is going to go out sooner, rather than later, with SP1 for Office 2007, SharePoint Server 2007 and Windows SharePoint Services 3.0. And the earlier Microsoft can get SP1 into corporate customers' hands, the sooner they might move toward deploying Microsoft's latest Office releases, the Softies are hoping.
I asked Microsoft for comment on whether the company will ship Office 2007 SP1 next week.
No word back yet.
Update: Microsoft officials confirmed at the end of the day on December 4 that the company will release Office 2007 SP1 on December 11, next Tuesday. Officials declined to speak about what's in the pack, but said it will include performance, security and reliability enhancements.
not expecting surprised there was any official confirmation, given the level of secrecy Microsoft has tried to maintain around the Office 2007 SP1 beta-testing process. Microsoft also has declined to say what kinds of fixes and updates will be part of Office 2007 SP1, but here are a few of the rumored Office 2007 SP1 updates.)
Until recently, when Microsoft provided a ship-date target, you could safely add several months (or, in the case of Windows client, years) to it when calculating when a new Microsoft release or update might actually ship. In the brave, new "under-promise/over-deliver" Microsoft world, maybe that kind of date padding might become unnecessary.