Hot on the heels of the news that Windows 8 will have its own PDF reader, Windows Reader, comes a (confident) rumor that Microsoft Word 2013 is going to include its own built-in PDF viewing and PDF editing capabilities.
If true, this is big news and a dramatic change from the days gone-by when Microsoft tried to pretend that PDF didn’t exist.
According to winsupersite.com Microsoft Word 2013 is being pushed as a document reader and to that end the PDF viewer functionality will include a reflow text option (necessary for seamless switching between portrait and landscape viewing on a touch device).
But Microsoft aren’t stopping at a PDF viewing feature, if liveside.net are correct, Word 2013 will include the ability to open PDFs in Microsoft Word and have them automatically converted to the Word format — thus enabling users to edit the content in the PDF. After editing is complete users can re-save the document as a PDF using the PDF save-as feature that was added in Word 2007.
PDF to Word conversion is a popular feature and there are frequently questions about it in the Planet PDF Forum — but it is also notoriously difficult to do accurately for every PDF. Perhaps that is why there is so many questions about it.
Google has also recently introduced a similar feature in Google Docs, so it is not only Adobe that Microsoft has set its sights on, but Google too.
Another rumor suggests that there will be a public beta version of Microsoft Office 2013 this month, so you won’t have to wait long to try out this new PDF friendly functionality in Microsoft Word.