Redmond-based software giant Microsoft has reportedly started to phase out the Starter edition of its Office 2010 suite, and already notified partners on the matter.
Apparently, the company did not succeed in its attempt to determine users to grab a more complete flavor of Office 2010 once they gave the Starter edition a try.
Moreover, it appears that the company is currently guiding its OEM partners to use the Office Web Apps (web versions of Word, Excel, PowerPoint and OneNote) as the replacement for Starter.
ZDNet’s Mary Jo Foley already managed to confirm with Microsoft that the Starter edition of Office is being phased out.
“We will begin to phase out the shipment of PCs with Office Starter 2010. After Windows 8 becomes available, most new PCs shipped will not have Office Starter,” a company’s spokesperson reportedly stated.
“People who use Office Starter 2010 today will continue to be able to use the product for the life of their PC,” the Microsoft representative also stated.
“For Windows7/Office Starter 2010 users who want to upgrade their PC to Windows 8 and continue using Office Starter 2010, they will have to install an update to Microsoft Office 2010 which is available today.”
Office Starter 2010 was made available for all Microsoft OEM partners and system builders as part of an OEM Preinstallation Kit (OPK), which was replaced this week with a new “Office 2010 Transition OPK,” without Office Starter 2010.
Moreover, Microsoft made an announcement about these changes to the new OPK on its website and said that the older one was replaced.
Mary Jo Foley also notes that the website for OEMs to order Starter licenses has been disabled, and that all links to the kit were removed.
Most probably, Microsoft is making these changes as it nears the availability of its Office 2013 suite. It should hit beta sometime in summer, and is expected to become commercially available in the coming months, in conjunction with the launch of Windows 8.