Microsoft is cutting the retail price of its Office XP Standard and Professional software suites and that of several stand-alone Office applications, the company said Tuesday.
Effective Wednesday, the estimated price at U.S. retail outlets for a full license for Office XP Professional will drop from $599 to $499, and for Office XP Standard the price will drop from $479 to $399, Microsoft said in a statement.
The company also discounted the stand-alone versions of Word 2002, Excel 2002, PowerPoint 2002, and Access 2002. The estimated retail price for those products will drop from $339 to $229, Microsoft said. The prices are estimates because the retailers set final pricing, the company said.
The discounts come as Microsoft continues to work on Office 2003, the successor to Office XP. The code for the new version of the productivity suite is now planned to be released to CD manufacturers in the third quarter, the company has said.
The discounting is unrelated to the introduction of Office 2003 later this year, according to Microsoft. Pricing for Office 2003 has not been finalized but is expected to be the same as that of Office XP, said Dan Leach, lead product manager for Office at Microsoft in Redmond, Wash.
The price reductions take effect May 28 in the U.S. and Canada and will be rolled out around the world as Microsoft subsidiaries implement their normal currency, pricing and other local retail adjustments, Microsoft said. The process can take up to two months, although some subsidiaries may sell at the new lower prices right away, according to Leach.
Upgrade versions of the software, Outlook 2002, Office XP Standard for Students and Teachers, and Office XP Developer are not being reduced in price.