LibreOffice 5.0 released with major improvements

The fully open source office suits hits a milestone with 5.0 release

Today marks an important day for open source office suite LibreOffice: The release of version 5.0.

The latest version comes with an improved user interface, something that users have been waiting for (and complaining about) for a long time. LO, as LibreOffice is commonly known, has taken cues from IBM Lotus and other office suites to make better use of screen space. Those who are on wide screen and want to save space taken over by the main menus can pull out properties from side.

With this version, LO is also offering better interoperability with office suites such as Microsoft Office and Apple iWork, thanks to new and improved filters to handle non standard formats.

Users have also been looking at LibreOffice for mobile devices as there is no viable open source office suites for Android or other mobile platforms. LibreOffice teams have been working on the mobile edition and online version of LO and there is a glimmer of hope.

Those who work with Calc (the spreadsheet application in LO)  will notice major improvements. According to a press release from The Document Foundation (TDF) announcing the release of the new version, “LibreOffice 5.0 ships with an impressive number of new and enhanced spreadsheet features: complex formulae, new functions, conditional formatting, image cropping, table addressing and much more. Calc's blend of performance and features makes it an enterprise-ready, heavy duty spreadsheet capable of handling all kinds of workload for an impressive range of use cases.”

Most users identify a new release with a new UI, but not every change is made at the surface. And in the case of LibreOffice 5.0, there have been massive improvements under the hood.  “According to Coverity Scan, the number of defects for 1,000 lines of code is now consistently below 0,001. This translates into an open source office suite which is not only easier to develop but it's also easier to maintain and debug. In fact, the amount of solved bugs is now over 25,000, and is increasing rapidly,” said TDF in its press release.

LibreOffice is available for Mac OS X, Windows and GNU/Linux based systems. While Mac OS X and Windows users can download the binaries or run updates to install the latest version of LO, Linux users will have to either wait for the official distro to add it to repos or install it manually.

Copyright © 2015 IDG Communications, Inc.

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