Microsoft Office 2007 has been redesigned both visually and internally. The new look gives it a relaxed feel while presenting a sense of professionalism. The new design can be misleading; Categories are removed, retitled, and redesigned. Before upgrading to Office 2007, take time to weigh the benefits against the disadvantages.
The amount of time necessary to learn how to use Microsoft Office 2007 has increased since previous versions. This is in part due to the complexity of some of the new features. For example, saving to the web is more difficult than the 2003 version because of the additional steps required. All the basic features are there, only now sitting in differently titled categories. This takes some getting used to because commonly used features have to be located before you can use them.
Office 2007 is backwards compatible. This means documents created with earlier editions can be opened just as before. If you send a file created in Office 2007 to someone with an older version of Microsoft Office they will have trouble opening the files. As a workaround they'll need to download and install a converter from Microsoft. This installs an add-on necessary to view the newer file; from that point on it will auto-convert when necessary.
The cost of the full version can reach over £325. As of May 21, 2010, the average price is closer to £97. This is reasonable considering the number of applications included in the suite, but the cost can still burn a hole in your bank account. Microsoft does offer discounted versions for students requiring a valid e-mail address ending with ".edu", and current enrolment of at least .5 credits.