A few weeks ago, Microsoft dropped some details on its upcoming cloud-based Office 365 development tools, and now the first fruits of those tools are available in the brand-new Office Store. It's in beta form at the moment, but users can begin testing out these web-based extensions along with an install of the Office 2013 preview. In a typically in-depth blog post announcing the new store, Microsoft noted that due to the web-standard nature of these extensions, users won't need to go through their IT department to load them up, and Office extensions will sync between computers when you sign in with your Microsoft account. This new storefront isn't just focused on Office users though — Sharepoint apps will also be in play here.
Unsurprisingly, Microsoft also touts the store's advantage to developers, noting that developers have "complete control over how and when they use licensing information in their apps." As for payments, Microsoft will keep 20 percent and pay the rest out to the app developers. While the storefront isn't bursting at the seams yet, there are a few high-profile apps like LinkedIn for Outlook, Groupon, and the Merriam-Webster dictionary. We expect the store will be filled with many more options by the time Office 2013 launches early next year.