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Microsoft Office 2007 Doubles The Sales Of Office 2003 In Launch Week

Office 2007 reaped twice the amount of U.S. consumer dollars during its launch week than Office 2003, an indication that Microsoft has found the "sweet spot" in pricing for the productivity suite, a research firm said Tuesday.

Office 2007, which launched the week of Jan 28, took in 106.3 % more dollars for retailers than the previous version, the NPD Group said. In addition, retailers sold 108.6 % more units. "It's hard to get anything bad out of these good numbers," NPD analyst Chris Swenson said.

On the business side, the numbers were almost as rosy. For the month of December, value added resellers reported that the amount of revenue from Office 2007 soared 97.8 % over Office 2003, and the number of units sold jumped 61.3 percent, the NPD Group said. The previous version's first full month of sales was in September 2003.

The solid business sales surprised Swenson. "With almost zero advertising and marketing until the January 30, 2007, retail launch, I expected U.S. commercial license sales of Office 2007 to be significantly below the sales of the previous version in its first full month on the market," he said. "They weren't. Sales of Office 2007 were significantly better."

The increase in commercial licenses came despite an increase in price. The average selling price to businesses rose 22.6 %, or $55.62, to $301.33, the research firm said.

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