For most average users, Microsoft Office 2007 is more than sufficient as it complies with all their requirements and is easy to understand and use for day to day tasks. Upgrading to Microsoft Office 2010 is good options for users who have more advanced work and need to compose heavy excel sheets and word documents. The Office Home and Business edition is the best option for small business owners and individuals. This version of Office 2010 does not have Publisher and Access.
Another even lighter and cheaper version of Microsoft Office 2010 is the Office Home and Student version which does not contain Access, Outlook and Publisher. By getting the free versions of Office 2010, you can still avail most of the amazing features of the product without having to pay the full amount for the complete version.
The overall interface of Microsoft Office 2010 (get the free download here) is pretty similar to Microsoft Office 2007. The ribbon was a new feature introduced in Microsoft Office 2007 and it meant the users had to go through a learning curve before they could get comfortable with it.
However, Microsoft Office 2010 does nothing radical with the ribbon – it is still pretty much there so if you are already using Microsoft Office 2007, you will not face any problems. There are two great additions to the ribbon though; one is the small arrow on the top left which lets the user know that he can minimize the ribbon at any time and then expand it later. This arrow was missing in the 2007 version which made it difficult for the users. The other great thing is that in Office 2010 you have the option to customize the ribbon, a feature that was absent the last version. This means that you can easily add and remove tabs from your ribbon with a click of the mouse. Another plus for Microsoft Office 2010 is that the version contains keyboard shortcuts for many functions which were not available in the 2007 version.
To overcome the competition offered by Apple’s iWork 09, Microsoft 2010 takes its graphics up a notch. Almost all pieces of the suite have advanced and sophisticated photo editing options, a far cry from what was offered in 2007. The very useful and innovative background removal tool in Office 2010 allows the user to easily save the object in the foreground and remove everything else which is of little or no use. Once you figure out how to click on the right areas to make an accurate selection, this can be a very useful tool, especially if you have to work with a lot of images in the document.
Many interesting features such as linked letters and swash are available in the 2010 versions of Word and Publisher, making them more professional and allowing users a greater amount of flexibility. To be sure, the complete version of Microsoft Office 2010 can be expensive, but when you think about all the pros and the features it supports, it is a one-time investment which will reap immense benefits in the long run.