Mac-Windows collaboration seen positive by Microsoft

Microsoft announced it would provide Entourage Exchange Web Services and Document Collaboration to Mac users. In other words, Microsoft decided to launch new Mac software later this year that will allow Office 2008 for Mac users collaborate those running the Windows version of the application.

Microsoft made this special announcement at the Macworld Conference and Expo, where Apple held its last last keynote. Microsoft also said that the Document Collaboration Companion will be released initially to a small number of beta testers next month. However, they did not promise a specific time for the final release by mentioning “later this year”.

A spokes-person for Microsoft also mentioned that the program will make it easier for users to download and upload their documents to enterprise servers, running SharePoint, Microsoft’s browser based collaboration platform, or to Office Live Workspaces; that is the free online service offering similar functionality.

Such steps initiated by Microsoft will definitely allow the Mac users to taste the benifit that Windows users have been enjoying over the past years. Microsoft will also offer free of charge Office 2008 users the phase of transitioning Entourage to Exchange Web Services (EWS) for connecting to Exchange mail servers.

This has dropped the currently supported Web DAV. However, a public beta for the Entourage EWS will be released later this month.