Microsoft Corp. has turned its accounting suite for small businesses into two separate offerings, one of which users can download for free starting Monday. Updated version of Office Small Business Accounting 2006, will be available here for free, said Rajat Taneja, a Microsoft general manager for small business applications and services.
Microsoft also will begin offering a slightly higher-end version of the software, Office Accounting Professional 2007, from retailers early next year. The professional edition of the software has more robust features than the free version for handling inventory management, budgeting, cash flow and other tasks mature small businesses require, Taneja said. Office Accounting Express 2007 is aimed more at small businesses that are just getting off the ground and need help starting up.