Microsoft to support ODF, PDF in Office next year

Microsoft is finally adding support for ODF (OpenDocument Format for Office Applications) and Adobe PDF to its Office productivity suite, the company announced on Wednesday. Support for ODF and PDF will be included in the software through Microsoft Office Service Pack 2, expected to be out in the first half of 2009, according to Microsoft.

Specifically, the service pack will add file-format support for PDF 1.5, PDF/A and ODF v1.1, as well as XPS (XML Paper Specification). XPS is a similar format to PDF created by Microsoft to rival Adobe's popular document-exchange file format. PDF 1.5 is a specification created and maintained by Adobe, while PDF/A is the current version of the standard PDF specification maintained by the International Organization for Standardization (ISO).