Sun StarOffice dropped from Google Pack

Google has axed Sun's StarOffice productivity suite from its Google...

Google has axed Sun's StarOffice productivity suite from its Google Pack software collection.

Google Pack allows web users to download free applications and tools to improve their web experience and make them more productive.

But Google has dropped the StarOffice suite from the list of Google Pack options without giving a reason.

There is speculation that Google is keen to spend more time promoting its own free on-demand Google Docs and Spreadsheet apps instead.

StarOffice was free with Google Pack, but it is charged for on Sun's own website. A small number of PCs come with StarOffice already loaded onto the machine for free.

StarOffice is in fact similar to the free OpenOffice suite of productivity apps that Sun also helped to develop. Both OpenOffice and StarOffice are billed as potential competitors to Microsoft's Office suite.

Google Pack still offers the likes of Google Earth, Google Toolbar for Internet Explorer, Norton Security Scan, Spyware Doctor, Google Desktop, Picasa, Firefox with Google, Google Photos Screensaver, Adobe Reader, Google Talk, Skype and RealPlayer.

StarOffice 9 is expected to be released later this month.

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