Kingsoft Office Freeware 2013
|Stable release||2013 (v.9.1.0) / December 31, 2013|
|Preview release||WPS Office 2014 (v.18.104.22.16858) / September 2, 2014|
|Written in||CodeGear Delphi, C/C++|
|Platform||Microsoft Windows, Android, iOS|
|Available in||English, Chinese, Japanese, Vietnamese, French|
WPS Office (an initialism for Writer, Presentation and Spreadsheets, previously known as Kingsoft Office) is an office suite for Microsoft Windows, Linux (currently in Alpha state), iOS and Android OS, developed by now Zhuhai based Chinese software developer Kingsoft. Kingsoft Office is a suite of software which is made up of three primary components: Kingsoft Writer, Kingsoft Presentation, and Kingsoft Spreadsheet.
The product has had a long history of development and success in the People's Republic of China under the name "WPS" and "WPS Office", and under the "KSOffice" brand is currently attempting to gain a foothold in international markets. Since WPS Office 2005, the user interface is similar to that of the Microsoft Office products, and supports Microsoft document formats besides the native Kingsoft formats.
WPS Office (then known simply as WPS) was started in 1988 as a word processor which ran on DOS systems, sold by Kingsun (at that time based in Hong Kong). WPS Office was developed specifically for assisting with the entry of Chinese language characters in electronic systems. WPS retained an large user base throughout the late 1980s and mid-1990s before Microsoft Word 95 and Windows 95 were introduced into the Chinese market.
Faced with competition from Microsoft Office, Kingsoft chief software architect Pak Kwan Kau (求伯君) diverted 4 million RMB from his personal account to assist in the development of WPS 97 for Microsoft Windows. In 1997, WPS 97 was released. The next version, WPS 2000, was released two years later. Both products were developed for a 16-bit Windows platform, with the capability of running on 32-bit Windows platforms.
In May 2001, Kingsoft launched a full office suite under the name "WPS Office 2001", which contained word processor, spreadsheet and presentation applications. With WPS Office 2001, Kingsoft entered into the office productivity market in the People's Republic of China.
In 2002, WPS Office 2002 was released, succeeding WPS Office 2001 as the flagship version of WPS Office and adding an email client to the office suite. WPS Office 2002 maintained interface compatibility with established office products, and as a result dramatically reduced the time needed for users to learn the interface of WPS Office.
In 2003, WPS Office 2003 was released. Individuals already familiar with Microsoft Office found little difficulty transitioning to it. The Chinese government made Kingsoft office software the standard for various divisions of the government.
The 2004 incarnation of the office suite, dubbed WPS Office Storm, was released in late 2004 to minimal fanfare. In its increased effort to compete with Microsoft Office, WPS Office Storm claimed to offer total compatibility with the Microsoft Office file formats. Unlike previous versions, WPS Storm was based on OpenOffice.org, and was the first to support operating systems aside from Microsoft Windows. In an attempt to differentiate itself from other office suites, Kingsoft collaborated with Intel and IBM to integrate their text-to-text and text-to-speech technology into WPS Office Storm. These new features became the focal point in Kingsoft advertising campaigns.
In late 2005, WPS Office 2005 was released with a revamped interface and a smaller size. Besides the Professional edition, a free-of-charge edition was offered, in the hope of attracting more users. The personal edition was only available in Simplified Chinese, licenced only to students and home users. A Wine-hosted edition was also provided for Linux users of WPS Office Storm.
In 2007, Kingsoft Office 2007 was released. Different from previous products, this is the first version trying entering into international market, with support English, Japanese besides native Chinese, for which it is still called WPS Office.
In 2009, Kingsoft Office 2009 was released which has increased compatibility with Microsoft Office including support for the 2007 version file formats. Kingsoft Office 2010 was released in 2010.
Kingsoft Office Suite Free 2012 was released in 2011. Kingsoft Office Professional 2012 and Kingsoft Office Standard 2012 were announced for sale in February 2012, in addition to Kingsoft Office for Android.
On 28 March 2012 Kingsoft announced WPS for Linux was under development. It is the third WPS Linux product, following WPS Storm and WPS 2005. It was developed from scratch, based on the Qt framework, re-implementing its Windows counterpart as best possible.
Kingsoft Office 2013 was released on 4 June 2013. Both Office free 2013 and paid office software 2013 were released on the same day. The new version consists of three programs, i.e., Writer, Spreadsheets and Presentation similar to MS word, Excel and PowerPoint, with consistent focus on business and home users. WPS Office for Linux does currently not exist in a final version; WPS for Linux Alpha 12 Patch 3 was released on 4 December 2013.
On June 6, 2014, Kingsoft Office has been changed to WPS Office. All Kingsoft Office products, both paid and free, have been changed to WPS Office. 
.wps is the file extension used for Kingsoft Writer Documents. This extension is also used for Microsoft's Works Word Processor. The format is similar to a Microsoft Word document (.DOC or .DOCX file) and supports formatted text, images, and advanced page formatting. Kingsoft Writer documents can be converted to Microsoft Word *.doc files in the software.
- List of office suites
- Comparison of office suites
- Office Open XML software
- OpenDocument software
- Web desktop
- Web operating system
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