Users must pay $25 if they want to test the beta
NeoOffice.org today announced that its alternative office productivity suite, NeoOffice, just made it to version 2.0 Beta and is available for downloading. According to the website, the software suite is available through the NeoOffice Early Access Program. Users must pay a membership fee to join. Currently, the price to join is $25 USD, but after August 15th, the price drops down to $10. For a full subscription to NeoOffice Beta 2 and higher, users must pay $60.
The current full release of NeoOffice is available free of charge, and version 2.0 Alpha 4 is also available free of charge. Since version 2.0 Alpha 4, NeoOffice has been available in both Intel and PowerPC binaries. According to NeoOffice.org:
The NeoOffice Early Access Program allows people to download a NeoOffice release before the official release date. The NeoOffice 2.0 Aqua Beta Early Access Program will start on 1 August 2006 and will end on 29 August 2006. Please note that your membership will expire at the end of the NeoOffice 2.0 Aqua Beta Early Access Program.
Several members of the community are curious as to why the final NeoOffice is free but the beta is not. DailyTech recently reported that Microsoft will be making its Office 2007 Beta 2 available for a charge of $1.50. While Office 2007 Beta 2 was free to developers and beta testers, today is the day that Microsoft will begin charging for its download. According to Microsoft, the charge is in place to cover the costs of distributing the beta.