Microsoft Office 2007 User Interface Licensing

I don't know how many times I've asked if it will be possible in the future to use the new "Ribbon", a key part of the new Microsoft Office 2007 User Interface.

Yesterday is arrived an official response from Microsoft: they have announced a new licensing program for the 2007 Microsoft Office system user interface which allows virtually anyone to obtain a royalty-free license to use the new Office UI in a software product, including the Ribbon, galleries, the Mini Toolbar, and the rest of the user interface.

As explained in the announce above, "you can use the UI in open source projects as long as the license terms are consistent with our license. You can use it on any platform: Windows, Mac, Linux, etc. If you're an ISV, you can build and sell a set of controls based on the new Office UI.

There's only one limitation: if you are building a program which directly competes with Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook, or Access (the Microsoft applications with the new UI), you can't obtain the royalty-free license.".

This is a great present for everyone (and a must to have for our customers I think, in order to provide a consistent user interface for every application). Now I hope that examples on how to include the actual Office 2007 UI on our applications will be released soon...

Print | posted on Wednesday, November 22, 2006 6:08 AM