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The Best Products Of 2010

CRN's Test Center unveils its Products of the Year. See which security appliances, mobile devices, notebooks, PCs and other products made the list.

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Software: Microsoft Office 2010

In many ways, one could argue that Office 2010 is just another incremental application upgrade from Microsoft. But there are key new aspects to the software giants flagship productivity product aspects that allow it to step up as the best software product of 2010.

Standing out for us is Microsofts integration of Office Live, its cloud-based/hosted extension for Office 2010. Where Googles suite of Google Docs, Google Spreadsheets and Google Presentation gained popularity with its lightweight, Web-based offering, Microsofts Office Live goes a step further. Documents, spreadsheets and PowerPoints created in Office 2010 can be saved directly to an Office Live account onlinefor collaboration or for access on another PC.

In addition, documents can be created in Office Live and then downloaded later directly to a PC. (The caveat, though, is that the PC must be running Office 2010. Earlier versions of Office, such as Office 2007, dont support this aspect of Office Live.)

Much of the robustness of Office 2010 is maintained between PC and the online version at Office Live. The result: Everything that many users like about Google Apps can now be found in Office 2010 and Office Livenotwithstanding the fact that Google Docs is free for individual users who tie their accounts to Googles cloud.

Office 2010 is a home run of functionality and flexibility that adapts to new use patterns much better than other business productivity software has in years.

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