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Microsoft shows support for popular formats

PDF and ODF file formats to be supported by Office 2007 with launch of Office SP2 in 2009

Microsoft has announced that it is adding support for PDF and ODF file formats to its Office 2007 suite.

"Microsoft is going to be providing support for three new file formats directly in the Office product," revealed Erich Anderson, vice president and general counsel for Europe. "We want to get out of the political realm, focus on what matters most to customers, and then take concrete steps to meet their needs."

According to the Redmond-based company, Service Pack 2 (SP2) for Office 2007 - due in the first half of 2009 - will include support for PDF 1.5, ODF 1.1 (OpenDocument Format for Office Applications) and XPS (XML Paper Specification). The XPS format was created by Microsoft to be a rival to Adobe's PDF format.

With Office 2007 SP2 installed, users will be able to save their Microsoft documents as PDF, ODF or XPS. Moreover, users can now change the default file format to ODF.

The news has won Microsoft words of praise from IBM and OpenOffice.org spokesperson, John Mcreesh who commented, "The whole purpose of having an open standard is to give people freedom of choice. Microsoft's announcement means we have a level playing field, which is what it's all about."

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