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Office 2007 gets official mobile compatibility

Office Mobile on Windows Mobile 5 and 6 phones can now handle Microsoft's controversial Office Open XML format.

Microsoft has issued an update for Office Mobile to enable compatibility with Office 2007 documents. Office 2007 introduced a new file format based on the controversial Office Open XML (OOXML) specification, for which Microsoft has been trying--seemingly in vain--to gain global acceptance. The would-be standard's main competitor is the fully open-source OpenDocument Format.

Windows Mobile has not had the ability to handle OOXML-based documents until now. The necessary update was accidentally and briefly leaked by one of Microsoft's U.K.-based mobility managers two months ago. The latest update is the official release and is available for users of Windows Mobile 5 and 6. As well as the ability to handle XML files, the update pack also includes enhancements for viewing Excel spreadsheets, the ability to view SmartArt in PowerPoint Mobile, and the ability to view files in ZIP folders and extract them.

David Meyer of ZDNet UK reported from London.