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November 18, 2009

Microsoft releases Silverlight 4, Office 2010, SharePoint Server 2010 betas

Includes Outlook Social Connector for developers to build connectors to third-party social networks

By CBR Staff Writer

Microsoft has released the beta versions of its Silverlight 4, Office 2010 and SharePoint Server 2010, enabling developers to create new applications.

The new version of Silverlight includes features such as, extended out-of-browser capabilities to enable desktop experiences without additional code or runtimes; and enhancements for enterprise application developers, including support for Visual Studio 2010, providing access to Office and SharePoint Server.  In addition, Silverlight 4 offers improved printing, networking, reporting and charting capabilities, the company said.

Silverlight 4 comes with webcam and microphone capabilities, native multicast support for media content delivery, and more than 60 customisable controls to build interactive applications, the company said.

In addition, the company also unveiled beta versions of Visio 2010, Project 2010, Office Mobile 2010 and Office Web Apps for business customers.

Reportedly, new features in the betas include Outlook Social Connector, a capability that brings communications history and business and social networking feeds into the Outlook experience. The Outlook Social Connector SDK is available for developers to build connectors to third-party social networks. It enables both business and social networking by working with SharePoint Server 2010 at beta and Windows Live at launch.

The new versions also includes technology and design advancements including, a better connected experience between Office 2010 and Office Web Apps, improved navigation, visual design and icon updates, and increased performance and stability, Microsoft said.

In addtion, Microsoft also announced plans to offer a new product named Duet Enterprise for Microsoft SharePoint and SAP, which will provide customers and partners with the opportunity to compose services based on SharePoint Server 2010 and SAP, enable additional interoperability, and blend the worlds of process and collaboration. The service is planned to be released in the second half of 2010.

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Kurt DelBene, senior vice president of office business productivity group at Microsoft, said: As exciting as this milestone is for our customers, I also believe that there has never been a better time for developers to build on the Microsoft platform. With a wealth of features and a single, unified business platform, developers can build rich solutions that take advantage of familiar tools and utilise core features of Office and SharePoint both on-premises and in the cloud.

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