Six good reasons to download LibreOffice 4.0

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Though this feature is currently available only to Linux users, the second release--coming soon--will be supported on Windows and MacOS X as well, the Document Foundation says.

3. A prettier UI

I've already noted LibreOffice 4.0's new support for Firefox themes, which Meeks told me was actually a request from a business customer, but there are also other UI improvements as well, including integration with Ubuntu's Unity desktop.

"Another big reason we call it 4.0 is the new UI layout," Meeks added. "Now we use Glade to design the UI in a way designers can use."

Improved accessibility and sizable dialogs are among the results, he explained.

4. Speed, and more speed

On a more practical note, LibreOffice 4.0 also brings significant performance improvements when loading and saving many types of documents, with particular improvements for large .ods and .xlsx spreadsheets and .rtf files.

5. Microsoft Office 2013

Much like Windows 8, Microsoft's new Office 2013 and 365 present users with a tough decision. Not everyone is convinced that the upgrade will be worthwhile, particularly in light of all the open options out there. I use LibreOffice every day, and would definitely say it's the fullest-featured and most attractive of those alternatives.

6. Free and open source

Last but certainly not least among the reasons for using LibreOffice is that it's both free and open source. What does that get you? In general, superior security, customizability, and interoperability, to name just a few advantages.

Ready to check it out? LibreOffice 4.0 is now available as a free download from the project site. Business users are encouraged to get their LibreOffice with support.

This story, "Six good reasons to download LibreOffice 4.0" was originally published by PCWorld.

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