REDMOND, Wash. — Aug. 13, 2009

Microsoft Corp.’s Macintosh Business Unit (MacBU) today shared details about the next version of Microsoft Office for Mac, announcing that a new application, Outlook for Mac, will replace Entourage for Mac. MacBU is providing this early information to meet the planning needs of enterprise customers. For current Entourage users, Microsoft Entourage 2008 for Mac, Web Services Edition is available today, providing performance and reliability improvements and enabling users to sync Tasks, Notes and Categories. These updates demonstrate the team’s commitment to meet Mac users’ productivity needs and to improve the overall Office experience. MacBU also announced a simplified SKU lineup to help make product selection more intuitive for customers. The new lineup introduces Microsoft Office 2008 for Mac Business Edition in addition to the current offering of Microsoft Office 2008 for Mac Home and Student Edition.

A New Outlook for Mac Users

The infrastructure changes in Entourage 2008, Web Services Edition, provide more agility in development for the future — marking the first step in delivering Outlook for Mac. Web Services Edition provides faster data synchronization so current Entourage users on Exchange will experience improved e-mail and calendaring support. The beta was launched earlier this year and has since been used by several large enterprise customers including NASA and Wesleyan University. Entourage 2008, Web Services Edition is available to current Entourage users on Office 2008 for Mac SP2, with all updates applied, on Exchange 2007 SP1 RU4 or later.

Microsoft Entourage 2008 for Mac, Web Services Edition – now available

Microsoft Entourage 2008 for Mac, Web Services Edition uses Exchange Web Services as the primary protocol to communicate with Exchange Server. In addition to several calendaring improvements, this new version of Entourage synchronizes notes, tasks, and categories with Exchange Server. This update also enables logging that can be used for diagnostic purposes. For detailed information about this update, see the IT Pros section of the Microsoft Web site.
Experience a tighter connection between Entourage and Microsoft® Exchange Server and greater parity between Entourage and Outlook with Entourage® 2008, Web Services Edition.  Entourage 2008, Web Services Edition uses Exchange Web Services instead of WebDAV providing Mac users a better Exchange experience.  Exchange Web Services is a modern protocol that enables client applications like Entourage 2008, Web Services Edition to communicate more quickly and reliably with the server running Microsoft Exchange Server 2007 SP1 with Update Rollup 4 or later.

This rebuilt version of Entourage 2008 not only offers performance and reliability improvements to e-mail and calendaring but new syncing of tasks, notes and categories, and Auto discovery.

Some highlights from the new and improved Entourage 2008, Web Services Edition

  • Enhanced Autodiscover service to easily configure account and automatically keep settings up to date.
  • Synchronization between Exchange Server and Entourage 2008 Notes, Tasks, and Categories.
  • Addition of an Enable Logging (troubleshooting) preference, to log all events that can be used as diagnostic information.
  • Built-in logging with extensive reporting of diagnostic information.
  • Use of attachments in Entourage for Exchange calendar events.

· Resolve names when composing mail and invites while outside of work without requiring VPN and LDAP

Minimum Requirements

· Server: User must connect to Microsoft Exchange Server 2007 Service Pack 1 RU 4 or later. (Caution: Entourage 2008, Web Services Edition will not work with earlier versions of Exchange Server.)

· Office Version: Entourage 2008, Exchange Web Services Edition is available to current Entourage users on Office 2008 for Mac SP2, with all updates applied.

· Processor: Intel, PowerPC G5, or PowerPC G4 (500 MHz or faster) processor.

· Memory: 512 MB of RAM or more.

· Operating system: Mac OS X v10.4.9 or a later version.

· Hard disk: 1.5 GB of available hard disk space; Hierarchical File System (HFS)+ hard disk format (also known as Mac OS Extended or HFS Plus).

The free Entourage 2008 for Mac, Web Services Edition, can be downloaded at http://www.microsoft.com/mac/downloads.mspx?link_name=downloads

Nick