Microsoft publishes an update tool for Office

According to statements to Macworld USA by Amanda Lefebvre, marketing director for Mac BU, “we continue to work on Office 2008, and we are meeting expectations so that it can be available in the second half of 2007.”

When the Mac version of Office 2008 is released, it will share the Open XML file format currently used by the Windows version of the product. Microsoft has released a converter that allows Office 2004 users to open such documents and save the content in a supported file format.

The converter offers read-only access to the new format, which means that users will have to manually save the contents of the file once it is opened. The final tool, according to Microsoft, will allow reading and writing, thus eliminating the need to perform the manual process. The final version of the converter will be released six to eight weeks after Office 2008.