Ars Technica reported Monday Microsoft has yanked nearly all versions of Word (and versions of Office containing Word) from its own online store. Writer Emil Protalinksi notes:
On the Microsoft Store, there are 32 results when you choose to display All Office Products, but the majority of them are not available for purchase... [Only] Office Ultimate 2007 and Office Professional 2007 are available....Microsoft does not give an explanation as to why the products are not available: "This product is currently unavailable while we update versions on our site. We expect it to be available soon."
Last month, a federal court permanently enjoined Microsoft from selling Word with custom XML capabilities after finding that the technology infringed a patent held by Canadian software shop i4i. Microsoft was certain the order would barely impact its sales because it had time to write patches that would remove the technology from existing versions, and it would simply not include the custom XML features in future versions of the word processing program. However, It seems the software giant wasn't as quick about patching existing versions of Word as it thought it could be.
A Microsoft representative quoted in the Ars piece says simply:
We've taken steps to comply with the court's ruling and are introducing the revised software into the U.S. market.
According to eWEEK, patches for Word 2003 and Word 2007 were added to the company's download center.